Sudanese refugee in Jerusalem
Photo: Haim Zach

Darfur refugees offered board in Sderot

Sudanese refugee crisis continues as State authorities refuse to accept responsibility for their plight. Police block buses transporting refugees to boarding house near Sderot but solution ultimately found. 15 new refugees join steadily growing group on Sunday

After spending the day being driven around the country and finally being offered room and board for the immediate future, the Sudanese refugees who fled into Israel still found no peace on Sunday.


Earlier in the day Beersheba’s municipality sent some 80 refugees to Jerusalem in the hopes of forcing the government to acknowledge the situation and find a solution.


But the refugees were sent back to Beersheba, with government officials saying that lodging accommodations had been made for them. Ynet however has learned that no such accommodations awaited the refugees upon return.


Refugees in Beersheba (Photo: Herzel Yosef)


Ultimately a joint effort led by Vered Swaid, social affairs advisor to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, the Jewish Agency and student activists proved successful and a boarding school on the outskirts of Sderot agreed to take in the many refugees for a period of at least 10 days.


But unfortunately the refugees' exhausting day was not over yet as police units located their buses and refused to allow them to head towards Sderot until the national immigration police gave its explicit authorization.


Around midnight the authorization was finally handed down and the refugees were allowed to continue making their way towards Sderot.


Meanwhile on Sunday police in Beersheba found 15 new refugees, who joined with the group on its way to Sderot later in the evening.


Eytan Schwartz, spokesman of the Committee for Advancement of Refugees of Darfur, called the day's events in Jerusalem a "colossal disgrace. It is inconceivable that in the state of Israel no governmental authority is trying to resolve the refugee problem. We thought that forced wandering had gone from this world, but apparently when it comes to Sudanese refugees, they can be sent wandering from place to place as though they were objects."


פרסום ראשון: 07.09.07, 01:58
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