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Senior US official eyes Israel’s border fence with Egypt as model for Trump’s wall

“Border security is national security. Our Israeli partners know that better than anyone, and I was fortunate today to see the incredible work they’re doing to keep their territory and citizens safe,” said U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

The border fence with Egypt in Eilat in southern Israel, Oct. 18, 2017. Photo by Yaniv Nadav/Flash90.
The border fence with Egypt in Eilat in southern Israel, Oct. 18, 2017. Photo by Yaniv Nadav/Flash90.

U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen visited Israel’s border fence with Egypt on Tuesday for ideas for U.S. President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall with Mexico.

“Border security is national security. Our Israeli partners know that better than anyone, and I was fortunate today to see the incredible work they’re doing to keep their territory and citizens safe,” Nielsen later told a homeland security conference in Jerusalem, reported Reuters.

Between 15 feet to 24 feet tall, Israel’s border fence with Egypt stretches more than 143-miles along the frontier with the Sinai Desert. The fence has helped reduce the number of African migrants illegally entering the Jewish state, while also protecting the country from an Islamic State-affiliated terror groups operating in the Sinai Peninsula.

Eyeing this success, Israel is also constructing a 21-mile-long, 20-foot-high fence along its border with Jordan to protect the its new international airport near the southern city of Eilat.

Trump has made securing the U.S. border with Mexico to stem the flow of illegal immigrants a top issue for his administration. During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump lauded Israel’s border-security expertise when commenting on his proposed wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

“You could ask Israel about walls that work. Believe me, walls work,” he said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu got himself into hot water with Mexico last year after he suggested the Israeli-Egyptian border fence as a possible model for Trump.

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