South Tel Aviv residents, rightists protest African migrants following rape

JERUSALEM (JTA) — South Tel Aviv residents and right-wing activists protested against African migrants following reports that an Eritrean man brutally raped an elderly Israeli woman.

An Eritrean man in his 20s was arrested in the rape last week of an 83-year-old woman that was reported for the first time on Monday. The same man had been arrested in connection with other sexual assaults, according to the Times of Israel. The alleged rapist on Monday was ordered held for four days.

Dozens of protesters marched Monday evening from the Hatikva neighborhood of Tel Aviv to the central bus station to protest the crime and call for the deportation of African migrants.

Among those leading the protest were members of the rightist Strong Israel Party, including lawmaker Michael Ben Ari.

"I call to issue a temporary order to deport all the infiltrators back to Africa," Ben Ari told protesters, Haaretz reported. "It is much more dangerous here than it is in Eritrea."

A number of violent incidents targeting African migrants in Israel from Sudan and Eritrea, believed to number 60,000 to 70,000, occurred over the summer and also in recent weeks.

More than 10,000 infiltrators entered Israel during 2012, the Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement released this week. Some 3,920 infiltrators from Africa left Israel in 2012. In addition, all infiltrators who entered Israel since June were sent directly to holding facilities and not to Israeli cities, according to the statement.

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