Interior Minister Eli Yishai on Thursday defended his decision to deport some 1,200 children of illegal foreign workers from the country, saying that the migrant workers were "using their children in order to stay in Israel."
"Let's not have naive, bleeding hearts," Yishai told Army Radio. "The parents of the foreign children are using their kids and turning them into a talisman to secure their continued stay in the country. The workers tell their children what to say in order to stay in Israel, and do not want to return to their real homes," he said.
"If the migrant workers' children will not be deported, labor immigrants will continue to exploit the state's kindness and will go on laundering their visas. Every country in the world must know we are not asylum state," he added.