Israel looking at hiring Indian workers after cancelling work permits of Palestinians

Work permits for nearly 90,000 Palestinians are said to have been cancelled which has led to an urgent requirement for workers to continue ongoing projects.
This comes a month after the outbreak of the war between Israel and Hamas (Photo | AP)
This comes a month after the outbreak of the war between Israel and Hamas (Photo | AP)

NEW DELHI: The outbreak of the conflict between Israel and Hamas on October 7 has led to a shortage of Palestinian workers in Israel. This gap may be filled by Indian workers.

"We are considering getting Indian workers to work in Israel. Around 20,000 to begin with. We need them in the construction activity and other jobs related to infrastructure. However, nothing has been formalised yet and it has to go through the proper channel where the Indian government is approached and a final go-ahead is received," said a source.

Work permits for nearly 90,000 Palestinians are said to have been cancelled which has led to an urgent requirement for workers to continue ongoing projects.

According to a report, Haim Feiglin, Vice President of Israeli Builders Association, has said that they need close to 100,000 workers to continue their projects and have sought to get them from India.

No official comment has been made by India in this regard.

In May this year, an MoU was signed between external affairs minister S Jaishankar and Israel's foreign minister Eli Cohen for the engagement of nearly 34000 Indian workers in the construction sphere and 8000 for nursing needs.

There were over 18000 Indians in Israel when the conflict began on October 7. Around 1000 Indians returned but the majority continue to work there.

Whether the Indian governments agrees to Israel’s request and when they actually permit Indian workers to go to Israel will become clearer in the coming days.

Meanwhile, there have been reports that Palestinian workers who were in Israel have been sent back home. The outbreak of the conflict and the high casualty rate which has left more than 10,000 dead has led to a low level of confidence between Israel and Palestine, so the workers had to leave.

Workers from Thailand constitute a large segment in Israel and most of them have stayed back despite the conflict.

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