African refugees in Israel face violence, discrimination and an uncertain future. Tensions came to a head in Tel Aviv this April with a Molotov cocktail attack on African homes and a creche. In a country where refugees are seen as ‘infiltrators’ and a ‘cancer’, Isayas is a refugee attempting to change the situation on the ground.
The asylum-seekers had been convicted on charges of illegal entry to Israel under national immigration laws. Such deportations of asylum-seekers without having their claims reviewed by the competent authorities amount to refoulement and constitute a serious violation of the 1951 Refugee Convention. Deportation of asylum-seekers and refugees to Eritrea is illegal under international law, the UNHCR believes they are likely to face persecution, torture, and execution.