Israel Rejects Refugees from Darfur Region

Jewish state conflicted about denying migrants targeted by genocide
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2007 4:37 PM CDT
Sudanese refugees are seen at a private home where they and others are temporarily being housed after crossing into Israel from Egypt, Kadesh Barnea, Israel, Sunday, Aug. 19, 2007. Israel said Sunday...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Israel has turned back 48 Africans to Egypt and says it will no longer accept Darfur refugees who illegally enter the country, the AP reports. Some of the 50 migrants a day who have already snuck into the country will be allowed to stay, Israel says, but all others will be returned to Africa even if they face poverty or death. Critics are prompting questions over the Jewish state’s moral obligation toward targets of genocide.

Israel's position is complicated by its own law, which forbids asylum to refugees from enemy states such as Muslim Sudan. One critic urges Israel to show compassion to refugees, but an activist stressed the Jewish state’s inability to “throw open the gates and allow unlimited access." Israel claims that Egypt promised not to send Darfur refugees home, a statement Egyptian police deny.