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Israeli expulsion of Africans postponed

JERUSALEM (AP) – An Israeli court has ordered the government to halt the planned expulsion of thousands of migrants from South Sudan.

In January, the government gave the migrants until March 31 to leave or face deportation. Under Thursday’s decision, the court accepted a request by human rights groups to suspend the order. It gave the government until April 15 to respond.

Up to 2,000 South Sudanese are believed to be in Israel, part of a larger influx of 50,000 African economic migrants and asylum seekers who have poured into the country in recent years.

South Sudan gained independence from Sudan last July. The rights groups claimed that repatriating the Africans would endanger them.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry has asked that the expulsions be postponed while it researches conditions in South Sudan.

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