Eli Yishai
Photo: Herzl Yosef

Mayors to be fined over migrants?

Interior Minister Eli Yishai gives mayors one month to fire any illegal infiltrators employed by municipalities – or personally face hefty fines

Interior Minister Eli Yishai announced Thursday that he will impose a personal fine on mayors whose cities will employ illegal infiltrators.


Yishai further announced a 30-day timeframe by which all municipalities must fire any migrants under their employment – or risk heavy fines.


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The minister's decision is seen as a counter-move against several mayors, who published an ad in several national media outlets, urging the government to act on the matter.


"Mayors can't say they are fighting this phenomenon on the one hand, while helping the migrants settle in and take jobs away from Israeli citizens on the other," he said.


"I have been leading this fight for years, without the unnecessary frenzy led by some politicians over the past few days," Yishai added.


Yishai's decision contradicts a government decision to impose such fines only on corporate entities.


'Israel plagued by infiltrators'

On Sunday, the government approved Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's NIS 630 million ($163.4 million) plan to fight infiltration. The plan details scaled measures against businesses found to be employing infiltrators, and also allows authorities to hold them up to three years.


Netanyahu said Sunday that "Israel is plagued by infiltrators – it hurts the economy, society and internal security. We are under no obligation to accept illegal infiltrators. Refugees are a minority in this and we will continue to handle their cases as always.


"This is not just another decision – this is an absolute necessity," Netanyahu said.


Also on Thursday, the rising tensions in southern Tel Aviv have prompted the police to bolster the force's already heightened street-presence with additional Border Guard officers, 100 of whom were deployed in the area.


The decision was made following a situation assessment held by Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch and Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino.


Omri Efraim contributed to this report



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פרסום ראשון: 05.24.12, 21:57
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