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Author(s): Tolts, Mark
Editor(s): Iontsev, Vladimir
Date: 2002
Abstract: In the years 1989–2000 about 1.4 million (ex-) Soviet Jews and their non-Jewish relatives left the former Soviet Union (FSU). Most of this movement (887,500, or about 63 percent) was directed toward Israel. The group of persons eligible for immigration to Israel (aliyah) according to the Israeli Law of Return is rather large; it includes Jews, their children and grandchildren, and all respective spouses. During 1991–1994, and again in 1999, immigrants from the Russian Federation were the most numerous group to arrive in Israel
1
. However, in the 1990s Jews migrated from Russia not only to Israel, but also to other countries, especially the USA and Germany. Thus, statistics of aliyah and statistics of Jewish emigration from the Russian Federation are not the same. Russian statistics contain data both on emigration to Israel, and on emigration of Jews to outside the FSU. The Israeli statistics of immigration, in turn, single out data on people arrived from the Russian Federation. Moreover, in both countries several sources of information reflect the various stages of the migration process, allowing for a pro-found comparison of the available data. This is of real importance, since only through such analysis can indicators of migration from Russia to Israel be correctly interpreted. The ultimate aim of this paper is to elaborate on the dynamics of the total level of Jewish emigration from the Russian Federation to outside the FSU on the basis of combined use of the statistical data of the two countries