January 16, 2019

The Increasingly Non-Jewish Jewish Population of Israel

“Most of the immigrants to Israel last year were not halachically Jewish, according to figures released this week by the country’s Central Bureau of Statistics.

Under Israel’s Law of Return, anyone with just one Jewish grandparent is entitled to citizenship and of the 30,300 olim last year, 12,600 were Jewish and 17,700 were not.

The total figure represents a five percent increase on the previous year. However, Aliyah from Britain fell by four percent to 660 compared with the previous year. There was also a large drop – 25 percent – in the number of immigrants from France, with only 2,660 making Aliyah in 2018.

Most of the new arrivals were from Russia and Ukraine, with France and the US taking up third and fourth spots.

Of the almost one million immigrants who arrived in Israel after the Soviet Union collapsed, 400,000 were not halachically Jewish.”

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