Two Likud MKs blasted on Monday the recently announced decision by the Prime Minister not to bring the remaining Ethiopian Jewish community to Israel this year.
A spokesperson for the Prime Minister’s Office, Udi Praver, declared that Israel would not be organizing a mass immigration this year of Ethiopia’s 9,000 remaining Jews, despite a government resolution to do so.
Instead, Praver said, a limited operation bringing 500 elderly and sick members of the community to Israel would be undertaken.
On Monday afternoon, Absorption Committee chairman Dr. Avraham Naguisa (Likud) and Internal Affairs chairman David Amsalem (Likud) expressed outrage at the government’s backtracking on earlier promises to bring the remaining Ethiopian Jewish community to Israel.
The two threatened to walk out on votes for the coalition, robbing the government of a majority. At present, the Netanyahu government has a narrow 61-59 MK majority in the Knesset.
Beginning in the 1980s, Israel brought in tens of thousands of Ethiopian Jews. The remaining community in Ethiopia is comprised primarily of Falash Mura, who are descendants of Jews forcibly converted to Christianity generations ago.
The Ethiopian community in Israel has for years called on the government to bring the remaining Jewish population to Israel. The failure to do so has left some families separated for years.