24 Jul New Olim Welcomed to Israel
New Olim Welcomed to Israel
When 200 new olim (immigrants) hailing from France, Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela and Russia stepped off the planes in Israel on July 17, 2019, they were met with a celebratory reception.
The immigration flights symbolized the beginning of the ‘Aliyah season,’ in which thousands of new immigrants from all over the world will arrive in Israel over the summer with the assistance of the Jewish Agency.
Of these new Israelis, 100 were originally from France, with the youngest on the plane just two months old. While for some French olim, moving to Israel was a lifelong dream, for others, their arrival in Israel is bittersweet.
“We’re leaving because of the situation for the Jews in France,” said Simon and Alice, long-time residents of Levallois-Perret, a wealthy suburb near Paris. The couple, both 76, moved to Israel given the rise of anti-Semitism in France.
To date, approximately 119,000 French citizens have immigrated to Israel since the establishment of the State; 37,000 came via the assistance of The Jewish Agency.
Also on board the Aliyah flights were two Jewish families who fled from Venezuela with our covert assistance.
“We had to leave Venezuela,” said Avraham, who immigrated to Israel with his wife and three children. “For three or four years now, the economic situation is not normal. The most basic things are missing, such as diapers for children and toilet paper, and it’s also a very dangerous place.”
For Devorah, who also immigrated to Israel from Venezuela, the anti-Semitism she experienced was only one of the reasons she decided to leave.
"Many Jews are leaving Venezuela for all types of places around the world...there are many Jews who came to Israel because there are many opportunities for a better life,” Devorah said. “But, I think that this is our place, our country."
“I’m always excited to see new immigrants making Aliyah to our ancient homeland. I’m very moved by these Aliyah flights particularly because they encompass three continents: Europe, Latin America and Asia,” said Jewish Agency Chairman Isaac Herzog. “We will help these new immigrants settle into Israeli society and, with the help of the Israeli people, enable them to become part of the rich mosaic of Israeli life.”