"This plan will get under way today", Netanyahu said at the start of the meeting.
The Israeli government is looking for ways to step up deportations and close down the Holot migrant detention center this year.
Netanyahu believes that the migrants' presence jeopardizes Israel's national security.
Those who cooperate and leave by the end of March will receive $3,500, along with airfare and other incentives, as reported by multiple outlets. Israel's government said the migrants' return will be "voluntary" and humane. The plan, however, exempts children, elderly people, and victims of slavery and human trafficking.
Thousands of Africans entered Israel before it erected a fence along its border with Egypt.
Israel has had to face a running battle with rights groups over its treatment of migrants.
This claim is backed by an investigation carried out by the nongovernmental organization Hotline for Refugees and Migrants that found that migrants who had left Israel for Rwanda were at greater risk of violence, extortion, and imprisonment. Amnesty global Israel and the Association for Civil Rights are disheartened by the policy and they stated that "Anyone who has a heart must oppose the expulsion of the refugees".
"Rwanda is not safe".
In mid-December, the Knesset approved its latest bill on the issue after a High Court of Justice ruling that allowed for deportation to a third country if the migrants did not want to return to their country of origin, but only with their consent and only if the third country was safe. When the plan was first announced in November, the United Nations refugee agency expressed concerns.
However, the High Court also ruled that since the deportations may only be carried out with the agreement of the migrants, refusal to leave Israel can not be considered uncooperative behavior. After March, the government will begin to detain remaining illegal immigrants that do not have pending asylum applications.
"Every country must maintain its borders, and protecting the borders from illegal infiltration is both a right and a basic duty of a sovereign state", Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday.
Fleeing war and persecution, many of these migrants came from Eritrea and Sudan.
And so now we are making good on our promise: "to restore the calm, the sense of personal safety and the law and order to the residents of south Tel Aviv and the residents of many other neighborhoods".