African migrants transport vegetables in south Tel Aviv 370.
Interior Minister Gideon Sa’ar’s Entry to Israel Bill, nicknamed the
“Infiltrators Bill,” will go for its second and third (final) readings Monday
night, as lawmakers brace themselves for a long night of voting.
of the opposition’s ongoing fight against the legislation, lawmakers have signed
up to give more than 100 speeches on items on Monday’s agenda, as part of an
attempt to filibuster the bill meant to curb illegal migration from
The new Entry to Israel Bill comes after the Supreme Court
canceled its previous version in September, saying it was
The legislation going to a vote reduces the maximum
amount of time a migrant can be kept in a detention facility without a trial,
from three years to one year.
The migrants will be provided with food,
drink, health services and a place to sleep in the holding facility – run by the
Public Security Ministry and Prison Services – that will now be open during the
day. The detention center will be closed at night and there will be head counts,
which the Interior Ministry says will help it make sure the migrants aren’t
In addition, the government plans to enforce laws
against employing migrants.
A Knesset Channel poll, conducted by the
Dahaf Institute, found on Thursday that 53 percent of Jewish Israelis support
Sa’ar’s plan to detain migrants for a year without a trial, though 35% do
The same amount of Israelis (53%) do not think that the fact that
Jews were not accepted as refugees in many places in the world before the
establishment of the state should influence decisions on whether or not to
accept migrants. However, 40% would keep history in mind.
84% of Israelis believe that work migrants’ entry to Israel endangers the
country and only 12% disagree.
Over half (59%) of Israelis think that
children born to migrants in Israel should not have a different status from
“The equation is cruel and simple. If Israel decides to be
the most liberal country in the West when it comes to illegal infiltrators, it
will bring an end to the only Jewish State,” Sa’ar said when the bill was
brought to the plenum for its first reading.
The Interior Minister said:
“It’s our responsibility, not that of human rights organizations or the courts,
to protect our borders, our character and our future. That’s the elected
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