ANALYSIS: Why is Jerusalem the poorest city in Israel?

Jerusalem may be a “port city on the shore of eternity,” as the poet Yehuda Amichai famously observed, yet many people express incredulity and disappointment upon learning that it also is the poorest city in the country.

According to data released by the Central Bureau of Statistics this week, approximately half of the capital’s total population, including 82 percent of east Jerusalem residents, live below the poverty level as of 2014. The poverty rate for the country is 22%. Poverty levels for east Jerusalem residents increased 6% since 2013, and 16% since 2006, the study claimed. However, a sampling of only 150 families in east Jerusalem was used for the analysis, which may call into question its results.


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