Israel’s 100,000th Immigrant of Year Arrives to a Tumultuous Welcome

The 100,000th immigrant to arrive in Israel this year landed Tuesday evening at Ben-Gurion Airport and was surprised and touched by the effusive welcome he received.

As Yitzhak Ben Arieh Krasilchik, an 80-year-old Jew from Leningrad, stepped from the plane that brought him here via Poland, he was greeted by a reception committee headed by Absorption Minister Yitzhak Peretz.

Peretz recited the Shehecheyanu blessing for a new or special event, to which Krasilchik responded emotionally in Russian, wishing himself and all other newcomers a swift, easy absorption.

Peretz told reporters he expected another 100,000 immigrants to arrive by year’s end.

Jewish Agency spokesman Gad Ben-Ari told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that at the present rate, immigration from the Soviet Union and other countries will top 20,000 for September alone. In August, it approached 19,000, the highest monthly influx since 1951.

Of the 100,000 new arrivals so far in 1990, 90,000 are from the Soviet Union.

Meanwhile, members of the Jewish Agency Executive will meet Thursday in Geneva to discuss how the costs of massive aliyah will impinge on other Jewish Agency activities.

According to Ben-Ari, the meeting will be the first at which the relationship between aliyah and other commitments will be examined.

The agency is solely responsible financially for the immigration process. So far it has not affected the budgets of the Jewish Agency Settlement Department, Project Renewal and the World Zionist Organization.

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