Israeli Cabinet Cracks Down on Illegal Transportation of West Bank Workers

The amendment calls for imposing fines, for administrative revocation of driving licenses and for the impounding of vehicles of people transporting illegal workers

Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan speaks to Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich on Jan 16, 2018
\ Eliyahu Hershkovitz

The cabinet has approved a draft amendment to the law regulating entry into Israel, which will increase enforcement measures applied to workers from the West Bank who are here without permits and to people assisting them, mainly drivers transporting them to and from work.

The proposal, submitted by Minister for Public Security and Strategic Affairs Gilad Erdan, calls for applying enforcement to West Bank settlements as well as to other areas. The amendment calls for imposing fines, for administrative revocation of driving licenses and for the impounding of vehicles of people transporting illegal workers, as well as for granting taxi drivers the authority to demand that passengers produce documents showing they entered Israel legally.

In addition, the ministerial committee for legislation is expected to approve a three-year extension of an ordinance relating to the law which regulates entry into Israel. This includes penalties for people employing or harboring illegal workers overnight, allowing the closure of such businesses for 30 days.

Erdan said that “we must severely punish violators who drive the engine of illegal employment so that it’s not worth their while to endanger the lives of Israeli citizens for the sake of making a profit.”