Palestinian census under way


Palestinians are conducting a census.

The census launched Wednesday by the Palestinian Authority will cover the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem, Palestinian officials said.

The last census, in 1997, has come under fire from some Israeli and American academics who said it over-counted by including Palestinian refugees who were no longer present in the areas and by double counting Jerusalem’s Arabs both as Palestinians and as Israeli Arabs.

The current figure, based on projections from the 1997 census, is 3.8 million Palestinians. The revisionist figure, backed by statisticians associated with groups who are skeptical of hastening toward a two-state solution, is 2.4 million.

A lower count would undermine claims that the Palestinian population poses a demographic threat to the democratic and Jewish integrity of Israel.

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