Ethiopian Jews Rally, Urge Israel To Allow 8,700 More To Migrate From Ethiopia – Linda Young – Jerusalem, Israel (AHN)

August 18th, 2008 Print Print Email Email

About 1,000 people rallied outside the Israeli Prime Minister’s office on Sunday calling for the government to allow 8,700 Ethiopian Jews into the country.

Long-lost Ethiopian cousins descended from Jews forced to convert to Christianity centuries ago are getting a cooler reception by Israeli Jews now.

About 8,700 more are now seeking to exercise their right as Falash Mura descendent’s of Ethiopian Jews to move to Israel under its law of the right of return for any Jew in need. Many of them are the relatives of people who already have migrated to Israel. (more…)

About 1,000 people rallied outside the Israeli Prime Minister’s office on Sunday calling for the government to allow 8,700 Ethiopian Jews into the country.

Long-lost Ethiopian cousins descended from Jews forced to convert to Christianity centuries ago are getting a cooler reception by Israeli Jews now.

About 8,700 more are now seeking to exercise their right as Falash Mura descendent’s of Ethiopian Jews to move to Israel under its law of the right of return for any Jew in need. Many of them are the relatives of people who already have migrated to Israel.

However, these Ethiopians are largely poor and uneducated, moving from a rural society where many had never seen a flush toilet or a television into a highly industrialized society.

Another problem has been the difficulty of many Ethiopians in proving they are descended from Jews, which they didn’t need to do 30 years ago when Israel recognized everyone in Ethiopia as Jewish and began airlifting people from there to Israel.

But recently, in order to migrate, Israel requires migrants to prove they are Falsah Mura, descendent’s of Jews forced to convert to Christianity in the 19th Century to avoid discrimination.

About 40,000 Falsah Murah have been allowed to migrate recently joining 80,000 Ethiopian Jews already in Israel. But the Israeli government has blocked further migrants.

That move prompted hundreds of Ethiopian immigrants to rally Sunday, many of them are trying to get relatives into Israel that they had to leave behind when they migrated.

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