Jews Leave France In Record Numbers: Report
The recent terror attacks in Paris, France have forced a record number of Jews to leave the country, a new report finds.
In the year following the Charlie Hebdo attacks, nearly 8,000 French Jews have done ‘aliyah’ and left for Israel, according the the Jewish Agency, which handles Jewish immigration.
The number of French Jews moving to Israel has doubled – and doubled again – in the past five years.
In 2013, less than 3,300 French Jews moved to Israel. Only two years earlier, that number stood at 1,900.
Several of the terrorist attacks have been anti-Semitic in nature; the Jewish school in Toulouse in 2012, the Jewish museum in Brussels in 2014, and the kosher supermarket in Paris and the synagogue in Copenhagen last year. While many cite these attacks as their reason for leaving, “the French Jewish community has been living with a deep sense of insecurity for quite some time,” says Avi Mayer, spokesman for the Jewish Agency.
A 2013 European Union study of the prevalence of anti-Semitism found that 74-oercent of Jews in France avoid openly identifying themselves as Jewish at least some of the time, and more than a quarter of French Jews always do.
Most French Jews settle in the southern Israeli city of Ashdod, known for its French Jewish population.
Britain has the second-highest Jewish emigration from Western Europe, but the scale is much smaller. According to the Jewish Agency, 774 British Jews moved to Israel in 2015, less than one-tenth the number of French Jews.