Eritreans in Tel Aviv
Eritreans in Tel AvivFlash 90

The Jerusalem Appeals Court dealing with issues of status and residency in Israel, recommended to the State an exceptional and extraordinary ruling to deport Eritrean asylum seekers back to their country "regardless of their political position as supporters or opponents of the regime."

Judge Menachem Pschtitzky's verdict was given in the appeal of a 44-year-old Eritrean citizen to the decision of the Population and Immigration Authority not to grant him refugee status. The appellant infiltrated Israel in 2009 after deserting military service in Eritrea and asked to be recognized as a refugee persecuted by the authorities in his country. The Immigration Authority rejected his request about a year ago on the grounds that "desertion or evasion of military service does not constitute grounds for political persecution and therefore does not constitute grounds for recognition as a refugee."

The judge ruled the asylum seeker who submitted the appeal did not produce evidence that one of the recognized causes of the Refugee Convention existed in his personal situation and rejected his appeal.

He stated that he did not have authority to instruct the State to change policy, but he nevertheless chose to address the issue of asylum seekers from Eritrea in Israel: "The State of Israel must change the non-deterrent policy on the issue of infiltrators from Eritrea and deport them back to their country. This is because of rampant crime in the streets on their part."

He noted there is "the incompetence of the judicial system in all matters relating to criminal prosecution and in light of the fact that the solutions tried so far have not succeeded.

"In light of the complexity of the issue, the scope of the phenomenon of infiltration into Israel, its negative effects on Israeli society, the failure of the authorities in implementing solutions, I found it appropriate to expand on the issue and discuss the issue of infiltrators in principle."

Tel Aviv
Tel AvivFlash 90