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Illegal African migrants killed crossing to Israel

JTA

August 16, 2010 | 10:47 am

Six African migrants attempting to cross into Israel were killed by their smugglers and by Egyptian forces.

The smugglers opened fire last Friday following an altercation over the fee to help about 100 migrants cross the border into Israel, killing four, according to reports. Two more were killed by Egyptian forces while trying to cross the border.

Several of the dead were Eritrean, according to reports. Some 22 other migrants were detained by Egyptian police.

Twenty-eight African migrants have been killed so far this year attempting to cross into Israel, 24 of them by Egypt’s police, and four by smugglers.

Meanwhile, Sara Netanyahu, the wife of Israel’s prime minister, wrote a letter to Israeli Interior Minister Eli Yishai asking him to allow 400 children of migrant workers slated for deportation to remain in the country. The letter was written by Netanyahu “as a mother of two young sons and as a public service psychologist,” Israeli media reported over the weekend.

Yishai has been a major proponent of deporting the children of illegal workers.

“Most of these children and their parents came to Israel as tourists,” he told Army Radio on Sunday. “It’s time to tell them the trip is over,”

Yishai and Sara Netanyahu will meet Thursday to discuss the issue, according to reports.

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