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October 1st, 2014
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Israel

Israel's Population Reaches Close to 9 Million

Israel's Population Reaches Close to 9 Million

The Israeli Population and Immigration Authority has released its annual figures for the Jewish month of 5774, ahead of Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year), which begins Wednesday night.

On the eve of 5775, there are 8,904,373 registered Israeli citizens, compared to 8,730,562 at the same time last year.

That population growth is due to both the Israeli birthrate and the steady stream of new olim (immigrants) into the country.

During the past year, a total of 176,230 babies were born - 90,646 boys and 85,584 girls. The statistics show a significant population boom; at this time in 2013, 160,749 babies were born in Israel, with a count of just 82,437 boys and 78,312 girls - a 9% increase overall.

Immigration has skyrocketed as well. 24,801 olim arrived in Israel over the past year, compared to just 16,968 in 5773 - a 46% increase.

The most popular boy's name this year is Yosef, followed by Daniel, Uri, Itai, Omar, Adam, Noam, Ariel, Eitan and David, respectively. For girls, the most popular name was Tamar, followed by Noah, Shirah, Adelle, Talya, Yael, Lian, Miriam, Maya and Avigayil.

All of the "most popular" names remained the same since 5773.

140,951 Israelis are currently registered as married, 75,848 of whom tied the knot over the past year - compared to the roughly 64,000 who wed in 5773 (15% increase).

In contrast, 32,475 Israelis are registered as divorced over in 5774, with a significant increase in divorces; 23,419 couples separated over the past year alone, vs. just 14,000 in 5773 - a 40% increase.

The Population and Immigration Authority counts the number of people who hold Israeli citizenship, some of whom do not live in the country.

Israel's Central Bureau of Statistics reported in May that 8.18 million people live in Israel, including Arab residents of East Jerusalem but excluding some 200,000 foreign workers and thousands of asylum seekers who did not enter the country through official border crossings.

At the start of the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday, September 21, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commented on the Central Bureau of Statistics report, calling the population growth a victory over the Holocaust and other tragedies that befell the Jewish people.

“I can say that there are more than 6 million Jews in Israel, in comparison with the number of Jews that were taken from us over the last century,” Netanyahu said. “Our strength is in uniting as a people and staving off our enemies,” he went on to say, wishing the people of Israel a happy holiday.             (INN)

 

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