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07.09.2004 Diaspora News

Toddler left behind at airport in illegal immigrant case

By Haaretz
Toddler left behind at airport in illegal immigrant case
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A three-year-old toddler was abandoned yesterday at the police immigration office of Ben-Gurion International Airport, after a man who claimed to be the child's father was arrested for being in Israel illegally.

The child was brought to the airport by a pregnant woman who presented herself as the man's wife, and sought his release. The police refused to release the man, but offered to organize a flight for him - a citizen of Ghana - the woman and the child back to their country. She refused, and after a while it became apparent that she had left but had left the child behind on a bench. The man refused to assist the police with information about the location of the mother, and assistance was sought at the Ghana Embassy in Tel Aviv.

The embassy sent a representative to pick up the child. The man said that he had crossed into Israel from Egypt eight years ago and married in Israel. It is still uncertain whether the man is actually the child's father.