January 2012 / Shvat 5772
There have been several recent reports in the press warning of a potential delay in the March 2014 target date of completion for the Aliyah of Ethiopia’s Falash Mura. Any delay would be due to the Government of Israel’s decision to reduce the number of monthly immigrants in 2012 to approximately 110 people per month.
Jewish Agency spokesmen have reiterated on several occasions that the Agency, which is responsible to the government for bringing the remaining authorized olim to Israel, can accommodate 200 people per month (as it has during 2011 when, over the course of the year, there were actually more than 200 immigrants on average coming to the country each month).
There is no difficulty processing the immigrants at the Jewish Agency facility on the ground in Gondar and there is no shortage of space in the absorption centers. Determining the total number of immigrants to Israel each month is a function of the Israeli government, which left flexibility in its initial decision when it commenced this project, as to the number of immigrants that would arrive each month.
Contrary to the press reports, it is too early to conclude that there will be a delay in the completion of the project, which will be the final chapter in the Aliyah of Ethiopia’s Jews to Israel. In fact, it remains likely that the original 2014 deadline will be met.
When this project is complete, the facility in Gondar will be dismantled and future immigration from Ethiopia will be handled as it is across the world through individual applications working through the shlichim of the Jewish Agency.