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Israel refuses to sign international migration pact

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Brussels, Belgium on 11 December 2017 [Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on Monday that Israel would not sign the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, a statement said.

“I instructed the foreign ministry to announce that Israel will not participate in the migration agreement or sign it,” a statement issued by Netanyahu’s office said.

The statement added: “We are committed to maintaining our borders against illegal infiltrators. That’s what we did, and that’s what we will continue to do.”

Israel Hayom reported Deputy Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely saying: “There is no interest for Israel to be a partner in this pact… Israel has to follow a special migration policy specified by its circumstances as a small state which aims to maintain its Jewish nationality.”

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The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration is set to be adopted by the Intergovernmental Conference planned to be held in Marrakesh on 10-11 December.

In recent years, Sputnik news agency said, Israeli authorities have reduced to zero the flow of migrants from Africa, having blocked their borders with Egypt, and now they are looking for an opportunity to expel about 40,000 illegal immigrants who entered the country.

A Pew Research Center survey last month found that 57 per cent of Israelis oppose accepting refugees fleeing war and conflict.

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