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Israeli absorption chief making plans for French Jews

PARIS (JTA) — Israel’s minister of immigrant absorption said she will submit to the government a plan easing the path for the growing numbers of French Jews coming to Israel.

Sofa Landver while visiting Paris on Wednesday told JTA that though she and her team expect mostly young immigrants, her ministry has prepared plans adapted to all ages and sectors designed to ”erase all bureaucratic hurdles” confronting new arrivals.

In addition, the plan will consist of reinforcing in Paris and other French cities the Israeli government personnel who assist those interested in making aliyah.

According to the Israeli ministry’s data, 3,301 new immigrants arrived from France last year, the highest number from that country since 2000.

Landver said she will present the program in an upcoming Cabinet meeting.

”Immigrating to Israel is a decision each individual makes on his own,” she said, ”but we consider it important to discuss our plans with the French Jewish leadership and to have their support.”

Asked whether she considered the rise in anti-Semitic incidents in France to be the prime motivation for immigrating to Israel, Landver said that a community confronted with an increase in Jews leaving “reflects signs of discomfort, signs of insecurity and perhaps of anti-Semitism.”

“Waves of Jews leaving their community are bound to have their reasons,” she said.

Landver said she and her team found that a recurrent message they encountered in France were parents encouraging their children to build their future in Israel rather than in their native land.

 

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