City Hit By Infiltrator Flood Asks ‘Why Us?’

The mayor of Petach Tikva, Itzik Braverman, has sent a letter to the Minister of Interior in which he warned him that diverting infiltrators who were freed from detention to cities other than Tel Aviv and Eilat only creates a new problem.

About 1,200 infiltrators were freed from the Holot holding center in the Negev in the course of the past week, following a High Court decision limiting the time for which they can be held in the open facility, from 20 months to 12. They were told, however, not to go to Tel Aviv or Eilat, which are already flooded with infiltrators. Many, it appears, headed for Petach Tikva, which is located a few miles east of Tel Aviv.

"What solution have they created here? There was pressure from public opinion in Tel Aviv and Eilat, so instead of solving the problem, it is being transferred to other cities,” wrote Braverman. “Now they are also reaching Petach Tikva, which is a growing city and for them, an attractive source of work.”

Split them up?

The people who will suffer are the ones who live in the weaker neighborhoods, he warned. “They will not rent apartments in the luxury buildings. They are going to live in the weak neighborhoods, and the veteran populace is leaving. This is going from bad to worse. I request that the government do some real thinking, as to how we will solve this problem. Maybe they should be split up evenly throughout Israel, so they can work in a regulated fashion and under state supervision and monitoring, and maybe then the chance that they will turn to crime will be lower.”

Another problem that needs to be solved is that of health and education services for the children of the infiltrators, opined Braverman. “We cannot let them stay here and at the same time refuse to recognize that they exist. The police also does not know what to do. On one hand, they are allowed to be here. On the other hand, they are illegal, so are they allowed to work or not?”

Braverman added that he expects confrontations to erupt. “They are establishing cultural frameworks, of nightlife and meetings, and religious frameworks, and this has many consequences that are slowly piling up, and one day it will explode in our faces. All of the churches that are scattered throughout the Jewish cities can lead to conflict with people of other religions. Perhaps it is not an acute problem yet, but it will get wo


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