JERUSALEM (Jul. 20)
The last of a long series of weekly flights carrying Ethiopian immigrants to Israel is scheduled to arrive here next week, according to Simcha Dinitz, chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel.
Dinitz, who also chairs the World Zionist Organization, made the announcement Monday at the WZO Executive’s weekly session.
The July 27 flight is expected to carry 40 immigrants. About 300 Jews will remain behind in Ethiopia, scattered in villages in the northern region of the country, which will only become accessible in September, after the rainy season. They will be brought to Israel in family groups or individually.
Dinitz reported that since the inception of the regular immigrant flights in September 1991, some 4,035 Ethiopian Jews have arrived here, at the rate of 100 to 130 a week. After next week’s flight, the total number of Ethiopian Jews who will have arrived in Israel since the airlifts of the 1980s will be 45,000.
Dinitz also reported that some 23,798 Ethiopian Jews are still housed in temporary quarters, 7,723 in absorption centers, 10,812 in mobile homes and 5,263 in hotels. Only 481 of those who arrived during and since the 1991 Operation Solomon airlift are already in their permanent homes. On Sept. 1, the Jewish Agency will transfer responsibility for absorbing the new immigrants of Operation Solomon to the government.