Israel has turned away dozens of African asylum-seekers, mostly Eritreans trying enter the country from Egypt, human rights groups have said.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) and two Israeli NGOs said that "since June, Israeli forces patrolling Israel's newly constructed border fence with Egypt's Sinai region have denied entry to dozens of Africans, mostly Eritreans".
The numbers of rejected asylum seekers from Africa has increased at the Egypt-Israel Sinai border since Israel started the construction of a 250km fence running the length of its border with Egypt. The fence is due for completion by year-end.
A report written by HRW, the Hotline for Migrant Workers and Physicians for Human Rights published on Sunday said Israeli soldiers allegedly denied food and water to migrants, beat them with fists and guns and pushed them across the Israel-Egypt border with long metal poles.