PIBA: Record number of 'infiltrators' in December

Due to improved security situation in home country, Ivory Coasters will no longer be allowed to temporarily reside in Israel.

January 1, 2012 21:49
1 minute read.
Sudanese detained after crossing southern border

Sudanese detained after crossing southern border 311 (R). (photo credit: Yonathan Weitzman / Reuters)

December broke a new record for the number of "infiltrators" who crossed into Israel illegally by way of the Sinai peninsula, the Population, Immigration, and Borders Authority (PIBA) said on Sunday.

According to PIBA, 2,931 migrants illegally entered Israel in the final month of 2011, part of a total of 16,816 who entered Israel over the course of the year, according to PIBA figures.

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In a report issued in December 2011, the authority stated that there were a grand total of 51,125 "infiltrators" in Israel as of November 25, 2011. Of these, 28,205 are from Eritrea, 13,066 from Sudan, and 9,855 from elsewhere in Africa, according to the authority.

Also on Sunday, PIBA said that after an assessment was made by the Foreign Ministry, they have come to the conclusion that Israel can begin working to return those citizens of the Ivory Coast currently residing in Israel. Though it did not say exactly how many are in Israel, they are among the nearly 10,000 mainly west Africans and Congolese in the country.

According to PIBA, the Foreign Ministry has ruled that the situation in the Ivory Coast can not currently be seen as one of civil war due to the improved security situation in the country, and that steps can be taken to begin returning Ivory Coasters home.

As a result of the decision, beginning January 1st Ivory Coasters will no longer be allowed to temporarily reside in Israel legally.

They added that they are calling on all residents of the Ivory Coast to return voluntarily to their home country.

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