ASIA/ISRAEL - Fr. Neuhaus’ appeal to the Israeli Government against the expulsion of 14 Filipino teenagers without residence documents

Friday, 10 February 2017 migrants   human rights  


Jerusalem (Agenzia Fides) - Jesuit Father David Neuhaus, Patriarchal Vicar for Hebrew-speaking Catholics of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, as coordinator of the Pastoral Care of Migrants, addressed an open letter to Aryeh Deri, Minister of the Interior of the State of Israel, referring to the case of 14 11-year-old Filipino boys, born in Israel to couples of immigrant workers, who now are at risk of immediate expulsion from the Country with their families, for the fact of not being in possession of residence documents .
In the letter, the priest of Jewish origin also refers to Manuel Quezon, the Philippine President under whose mandate the Asian country in 1930, received more than 1,300 Jews who fled from Europe, saving them from the Nazi death camps. "You have decided", writes father David in his appeal, referring to the Filipino adolescents at risk of expulsion, "that there is no place for them in the State of Israel. These young people were all born here, they speak almost exclusively Jewish, they consider this Country as their homeland and have only a dream: to build their home here, contributing to the development and prosperity of our country".
The children’s grandparents - emphasizes the Jesuit priest - "came here to take care of our elderly, disabled and sick, and do it day by day with devotion and love. Many of them left their elderly parents, disabled and sick relatives, to take care of us".
In the letter, the possible expulsion of the Filipino children is defined by Father Neuhaus as "an act of cruelty" that "betrays a memory of kindness and generosity". The Jesuit, at the end of his message, invites the minister to cancel the decree of expulsion, and recalls that even the refugees from Darfur and Eritrea are "the true brothers and sisters of those Jews who fled from persecution because they were Jews, and found refuge here". (GV) (Agenzia Fides 10/02/2017)