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30 Jan 2024

By Industriall Global Union (Switzerland)

Unions raise concerns over migrant workers in Israel

In light of the ongoing bombing of the occupied Palestinian territories of Gaza and West Bank, Israel‘s government has prohibited Palestinian workers from entering its territory. Over one million Palestinian workers have been engaged in various precarious jobs in Israel before their work permits were cancelled. In an attempt to address the labour shortage, Israel is planning to bring in migrant workers from Asia.

In India, recruitment drives are ongoing sending precarious workers to Israel. Sri Lanka’s government has also been encouraging its workers to apply for work in Israel. There were already many workers from Nepal employed in Israel, some of who have lost their lives during the war.

Trade unions in both India and Sri Lanka have criticised their governments for encouraging workers to find jobs in a war zone. According to a bilateral agreement, which India’s government signed with Israel in May last year, around 42,000 Indian workers would be sent to work in Israel. However, in the present situation it is estimated that over one hundred thousand Indian workers will be sent to Israel.

The joint platform of central trade unions in India issued a statement in November last year, opposing the Indian government’s decision to export Indian workers to Israel to replace workers from Palestine…