Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images
A family from France making aliyah arrives at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod, Israel, December 8, 2015. Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images
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Report: 7,238 French Jews Make Aliyah in 2015, Tops Among Olim

Large increases also seen in thousands of Ukrainian and Russian Jews who immigrated to Israel

by
Jonathan Zalman
December 23, 2015
Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images
A family from France making aliyah arrives at Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod, Israel, December 8, 2015. Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images

According to the JTA, citing a report from the Jewish Agency for Israel, 2015 was a year of steady immigration for Jews making aliyah, in particular those from France, Russian, and Ukraine, where violence—in the form of deadly terrorist attacks or regional conflict—was prevalent throughout the year.

This year, 7,238 French Jews made aliyah under Israel’s law of return; for the second year in a row, the population with the highest number of olim. This represents a 10% percent increase over 2014’s numbers (during the period of January 1 – December 1). Presumably affecting this number is a much reported undercurrent of anti-Semitism in France, including the Hyper Cacher murders in January, and the terrorist attacks in Paris last month.

The number of Russians making aliyah (over 6,000) increased by an remarkable 44 percent over the first 11 months of 2015 compared to the year prior. A total of 6,848 Ukrainian Jews made aliyah as well, compared 10 6,149 in 2014.

American olim totaled 2,940.

Jonathan Zalman is a writer and teacher based in Brooklyn.

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