UN refugee agency urges Israel to scrap plans to send migrants back to Africa

Israel should abandon plans to forcibly send tens of thousands of migrants back to Africa, the UN refugee agency urged on Tuesday, suggesting that some could be resettled in Europe or in other countries. Last week, Israel said it would pay thousands of African migrants living illegally in the country to leave, threatening them with jail if they remain beyond the end of March, Reuters reports. The vast majority come from Eritrea and Sudan and many point out that they have fled war and persecution as well as economic hardship. However, Israel treats them mostly as economic migrants.