The first section being built is an 18.6-mile stretch between Eilat and Timna in southern Israel. The budget for this section is $71.4 million. The fence is meant to prevent the entry into Israel of illegal migrants and terrorists. Its construction comes after Israel completed building fences along the lengths of its borders with Egypt in the south and Syria in the north.
Referring to the current refugee crisis in Europe, Netanyahu said at the construction site, “Unlike Europe, which has 360 million residents and a huge economy, Israel is a small country, with a small population, and has no demographic depth. Therefore, it must strictly control its borders.”
Netanyahu, however, reiterated that Israel is not indifferent to the plight of Syrian refugees.
“Israel was the first country to provide humanitarian aid to people wounded in the civil war in Syria, and we have already treated more than 1,000, including women and children,” he said. “[But] we will not allow Israel to be flooded with infiltrators, work migrants, and terrorist operatives. We see today what is happening to countries that have lost control of their borders.”