Israelis build the world’s biggest detention centre

The Independent

Catrina Stewart

Israel is to begin construction soon on a vast detention facility in the Negev desert to house the thousands of immigrants that cross illegally into Israel from Egypt every year.

Human rights groups fear that the detention centre, the largest of its kind in the world, with a capacity to hold 8,000 migrants, will turn into a festering refugee camp, and deprive those escaping persecution at home of their rights to seek asylum in Israel.

The project was approved by Israel’s right-wing government 18 months ago, but many Israelis are uncomfortable about spurning asylum seekers from war-torn African countries given their own history as a nation of refugees.

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