TEL AVIV, Israel, March 10 (UPI) -- Israel's Immigration Authority says it will immediately begin the deportation of children of foreign workers not attending school.
However, Interior Minister Eli Yishai said Wednesday the government wouldn't immediately deport about 400 children of foreign workers who are attending school, the Jerusalem Post reported.
Yishai said the delay wouldn't apply to about 800 children attending school who don't meet the government's criteria for staying in the country.
"After finishing all the necessary preparations, and paying sensitive attention to the public, I have delayed enforcing the deportation orders for those families with children studying in educational institutions in Israel," Yishai said in a statement.
"At this stage, we will begin with the children of families about whom there is no disagreement as to their non-compliance with government-agreed conditions."
Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar welcomed news of the delay for students.
"My position has always been that we must not deport children who study in the school system," Sa'ar said. "This is a humane stance, but also a forward thinking approach that is in keeping with our national interests."
Earlier this week, the city of Bnei Brak said it would prevent foreign children from enrolling in the city's schools at the start of the next school year.