JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israel brought 12 Jews from conflict-riven southern Kyrgyzstan to Israel.
The 12 Kyrgyz Jews were brought to Israel on Sunday and were scheduled to attend a welcome ceremony at the Jewish Agency for Israel’s board of governors assembly on Monday along with 650 other new immigrants. They were immediately made Israeli citizens.
Fewer than 70 Jews are thought to live in southern Kyrgyzstan. Most of the country’s estimated 1,500 Jews reside in the capital city of Bishkek. To date, no Jews have been harmed in the ethnic violence, according to the Jewish Federations of North America.
More than 2,000 people have been killed and 40,000 displaced in fighting between ethnic Uzbeks and Kyrgyz that began earlier this month in the country’s south.