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December 30, 2016 1:18 pm

Israel Welcomes 27,000 New Immigrants in 2016, Marking a Slight Dip From Previous Year

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A happy couple makes aliyah as part of El Al Flight LY 3004, a Nefesh B'Nefesh chartered flight, in July 2014. Photo: Sasson Tiram.

A happy couple makes aliyah as part of El Al Flight LY 3004, a Nefesh B’Nefesh chartered flight, in July 2014. Photo: Sasson Tiram.

JNS.org — Approximately 27,000 new immigrants arrived in Israel this year, marking a slight dip from 2015, according to a newly released joint-report from the Jewish Agency for Israel and the Israeli Ministry of Aliyah and Immigration Absorption.

Overall, aliyah was down 13 percent, with fewer French, Ukrainian and American individuals moving to Israel. However, immigration from certain locations rose significantly this year, including from Brazil, Belarus and South Africa, while Russia continues to be a leading source of aliyah, with some 7,000 new arrivals in 2016.

Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky said the last two years have seen high numbers of immigration “due, in part, to a series of external factors that have changed or disappeared, at least for the moment.”

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“At the same time, despite the downward shift this year, we see that the long-term trends continue,” Sharansky said, adding that “the number of immigrants to Israel, particularly from Western countries, remains high compared to the averages of the past 15 years.”

“Israel continues to draw Jews from around the world seeking to live lives of meaning and identity,” he said.

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