Israeli Police Releases Crime Data for 1st Time on Eritrean and Sudanese Migrants

The report said there were 543 open cases on Eritrean and Sudanese migrants for violent offenses, 402 for property offenses, and 72 for sex offenses in 2017.

Proportionally, there are more cases opened for Eritrean and Sudanese population than the general population and the rest of migrants. The migrant group was accused of 4.3 times more sex offenses, 3 times more property offenses and 3.4 more violent offenses than the general public.

While this is startling, it was not clear from the data whether this stemmed from police accusing more migrants of crimes or because these migrants are actually committing more crimes. The Ynet report did not show the number of convicted criminals, only the number of opened cases.

“The time has come to put an end to all the false information that is disseminated on the subject,” Director of the Israeli Immigration Policy Center Yonatan Yakobovich, told Ynet, adding that the figures received from the Israel Police prove unequivocally that crime rates among infiltrators are much higher than their share of the population in all categories that affect the sense of security of Israeli citizens.

The topic of migrant crime has been in the public spotlight because of murders like Silvana Tsegai, a 12-year-old Eritrean asylum-seeker, who was found dead by her mother in their apartment in the Hatikva neighborhood of Tel Aviv in late November.

There were 37,885 persons defined as ‘infiltrators’ in Israel as of September 2017, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. These are mostly Eritrean and Sudanese who “enter Israel through an unrecognized border entry point.”

“We are in a situation where there is no government policy. On the one hand, asylum seekers are not expelled, but on the other hand they [Israel] do not recognize their existence,” Yuval Hayo, deputy director-general of the State Comptroller told Ynet. “This is an issue that is both constitutional and moral, which obligates us as a state to relate in some way to the public that is doing the most laborsome work here. These are people who sit among us and they are human beings, but we do not recognize their existence and the daily expression of this is terrible. ”

The data was released to Ynet by the Israeli Immigration Policy Center via the Freedom of Information Law, which allows any citizen to request and receive information from public authorities.

The Israeli Immigration Policy Center is a conservative non-profit whose mission is to “promote immigration policy which serves the strategic interests of the State of Israel as a Jewish, democratic state.” In February, the center said it supports the governments position to deport migrants and believes that claims against the deportations are misguided.

“The reports that we are seeing that people are being sent to their deaths or torture in Rwanda or Uganda are absolutely and unequivocally false,” Israeli Immigration Policy Center spokesman Yonatan Jakubowicz said.

International human rights organizations such as Amnesty International and Hotline for Refugees and Migrants disagree.

“We know from numerous testimonies that the refugees who are sent to Rwanda are tortured and not given any security, status or work permits, so they must continue with their asylum journey,” Dror Sadot, spokeswoman for the Hotline for Refugees and Migrants said.