'Up to 60,000 Palestinians illegally enter Israel daily'

Defence chief says they enter through security fence breaches

17 August, 11:53

    A Palestininian woman jumps over a new sections of the Israeli separation wall A Palestininian woman jumps over a new sections of the Israeli separation wall

    TEL AVIV - Between 50,000 to 60,000 Palestinians enter Israel illegally on a daily basis, using breaches in the security fencing that separates the two territories, said Israel Defence Forces Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot in a hearing of the State Control Committee of the Knesset, Israel's Parliament.

    "We're making great efforts to close the breaches, but there are still about 100 kilometres without security fencing," Eisenkot said, adding that the majority of the breaches occur in fencing between the Hebron hills and the Dead Sea.

    Eisenkot said each year about 4,300 Palestinians are arrested for illegally entering Israel, but only 1,500 are formally charged.

    He said that about 100,000 Palestinians enter the country legally each day, and "don't constitute a violent threat".

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