Population and Immigration Authority head Ganot quits

The head of the Population and Immigration Authority, Ya'akov Ganot, announced Thursday that he would be stepping down from the controversial job after only a year and a half in the position. Ganot, who was appointed head of the Population Authority by former interior minister Ronnie Bar On, took over in July 2007. Late last year, it was decided that the Interior Ministry would become responsible for the newly-created Immigration Authority and the troublesome task of dealing with thousands of illegal migrant workers was handed over to Ganot. During his tenure, Ganot also made critical decisions regarding the legal immigration of Jews whose heritage was not completely clear, converts to Judaism and other interpretations of the Law of Return. An Interior Ministry spokeswoman said it was not immediately clear who would be replacing him as head of the authority, but she added that it was a decision made by the government. Ganot is set to become the director general of the Transport Ministry.