South Sudanese President Salva Kiir arrived in Israel
overnight Tuesday for a 24-hour visit during which he is scheduled to meet with President Shimon Peres,
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu,
Defense Minister Ehud Barak
and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.
Officials said the Israeli leaders will discuss with Kiir possible solutions to the overflow of illegal immigrants from Sudan and will ask that he assist in the absorption of Sudanese nationals Israel will fly back to the new African country.
Kiir (L) with Deputy FM Danny Ayalon and MK Danny Danon
The officials said Kiir will be told that the illegal immigration from Sudan has become a national problem in Israel.
Knesset Member Danny Danon (Likud), who heads the Committee for Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Affairs, will accompany the South Sudanese leader during his visit. "I visited South Sudan in August and got the impression that they were very interested in Israeli assistance on issues such as the military and welfare, and development in general," said the lawmaker.
"During my visit I discussed the illegal immigration problem with (Kiir), and he is aware of it," Danon said.
The Foreign Ministry has recently unveiled a plan to provide illegal African immigrants with professional training that would ease their return to their home countries. Israeli officials are expected to ask Kiir to launch a similar project that would encourage Sudanese nationals who reside in Israel illegally to return to their homeland.