Those working to help the migrant community, however, decry such sweeping actions, arguing that Israel, a country essentially built by Jewish refugees from Europe, has a responsibility to help other refugees in need. They blame the lack of a clear government policy to help refugees and asylum seekers for many of the social problems the country faces.
Sigal Rozen, public policy coordinator of the Hotline for Migrant Workers, which provides Eritreans and other non-Israeli residents with skills and information to function in Israel, says that Mengistu's newspaper is just what the Eritrean community needs at this stage.
"The majority of the people only speak their own language, and while they might know a bit of Hebrew, they certainly cannot read or write in Hebrew," she says.
People arriving from Africa have to contend with a new culture and a different mentality, which often leads to misunderstandings with Israelis, Ms. Rozen says. Many immigrants are not aware of the rights they have or do not have in Israel.
Rozen lauds Mengistu's attempt to tackle these issues, calling the newspaper a real effort by Eritreans to "genuinely adjust themselves to life in Israel.
"I really hope it will help to minimize resentment against them, too," she says.
Mengistu hopes his newspaper can play an important role in that regard, he says.
"We have no political voice here at all, and we have no real status," he says. "This newspaper allows for conversation among the [Eritrean] community, and also lets Israelis know that we are not a threat, but, in fact, if we are treated right, we could one day become ambassadors for Israel."