An urgent request to launch an investigation into the forcible deportation of Eritrean and Sudanese asylum seekers by Israel to Rwanda was submitted on Monday, March 5, by prominent Israeli human rights and Left activists to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
The State of Israel has made a secret agreement with the Kagame government in Rwanda, as to the forcible deportation of asylum seekers from Eritrea and Sudan to Rwanda, in return for $US 5,000 for every person accepted by the latter state. This amounts to sheer deception, since Rwanda denies the very existence of this agreement, and the deportees receive no status there, but are immediately removed to Uganda, and in fact forced into a second refugee journey, in which many are arrested, tortured, murdered, raped, and sold.
The clandestine nature of the agreement between the State of Israel and Rwanda reminds one of the clandestine nature of the agreement signed in April 1975 between the State of Israel and the Apartheid regime in South Africa. The Israeli Minister of Defense at the time, Mr. Shimon Peres, and the South African apartheid regime’s Minister of Defense signed a security agreement, which set the framework of relations between the two states for the next 20 years. A special clause in the agreement stipulated that each of the parties would lie as to its very existence.
Among other things, the letter states: “We, as citizens of the State of Israel, oppose the racist policy of our government, and believe that African asylum seekers deserve rights without any manifestation of discrimination based on race, religion or gender. We believe the time has come for new relations between the State of Israel and citizens of African states, relations based on mutual respect, solidarity and genuine cooperation, and not on arms sales and the support of repression … We ask the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to launch an immediate investigation into the agreement between the two states, an agreement which can only be deemed as one of human trafficking.”
Among the Israeli human rights activists who signed the letter are:
Att. Eitay Mack, Yael Agur Orgal, Dr. Efraim Davidi, Gilad Liberman, Sigal Kook Avivi, Michal Peleg, Dr. Ilana Hammerman, kobi snitz, Dr. Hannah Safran, Ilan Zisser, Ran Shauli, Lily Traubmann, Aharon Segoly, Raya Rotem ,Prof. Veronika Cohen, Hanna Barag, Dr. Elliot Cohen, Tzvia Their, Ofer Neiman, Sara Benninga, Guy Butavia, Ronit Marian-Kadishay, Shlomo Slutzky, Snait Gissis, Diana Dolev, Manya Kagan, Avital Steinitz, Rami Pinchover, Shaul Tcherikover, Prof. Nurit Peled-Elhanan, Ofra Offer Oren, Yael Agmon, Jessica Nepomneshi, Eyal Nir, Guy Hirshfeld, Dr. Anat Matar, Naomi Kirshner, Shir Hever, Amnon Lotan, Aya Gavriel, Yehoshua Rosin, Tal Haran, Buma Inbar, Pnina Tal, Claudio Marcelo Kogon, Yoav Hass, Daniela Yoel, Tsilla Goldenberg, Efrat Levy, Sahar M. Vardi, Avraham Rinat, No’omi Rinat, Avishay Halavy, Irit Halavy, Mieko Galiko, Norah Orlow, Taya Govreen-Segal and Itamar Feigenbaum.