HOW MANY ARABS FLED ISRAEL ?
In 1947, there were approximately one million Arabs in the whole of western Palestine. (British figures put the number at 1,200,000; independent calculations claim 800-900,000).
Of these, the total number actually living in that part of Palestine which became Israel was, according to the British figure, 561,000.
After the end of hostilities in 1949, there were 140,000 Arabs remaining in Israel.
The total number of Arabs who left could not, therefore, mathematically have been more than some 421,000. (561 – 140 = 421)
At the end of May 1948, Faris el Khoury, the Syrian representative on the UN Security Council, estimated their number at 250,000
Emile Ghoury (who twelve years later talked of two million) announced on September 6, 1948, that by the middle of June 1948, at the time of the first truce, the number of Arabs who had fled was 200,000.
"By the time the second truce began (July 17, 1948)," Emile Ghoury said, "their number had risen to 300,000"
Count Bernadotte, the UN Special Representative in Palestine, reporting on September 16, 1948, informed the United Nations that he estimated the number of Arab refugees at 360,000, including 50,000 in Israeli territory (UN Document A/1648).
After July 1948, there was a fourth exodus of some 50,000 Arabs from Galilee and from the Negev.
Any Arab who entered Israel up to two years prior to the rebirth of the Jewish state could claim to be a Palestinian refugee, even if he and his ancestors had lived elsewhere for generations before and he owned no land or property in Palestine. [Editor's note: the UNRWA collected information from 'refugees' on an 'honor basis' without checking even the above absurdly minimal requirements] Middle East Digest - October 1998
Refugees are universally considered persons displaced from permanent residence by war. But in 1948, the UN recognized as refugees Arabs who lived in Palestine for only two years. Why? Before 1948, hundreds of thousands of Arabs from Iraq, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and even Morocco, migrated illegally into Palestine, unchecked by British police, who meanwhile blocked Jewish immigration into the land mandated to Jews by the League of Nations, with King Faisal's blessing. These illegal immigrants largely make up the people now ubiquitously called Palestinians. (Peters, From Time Immemorial, pp 1-10, 137-171, 196-340; Katz, Battleground, pp. 231-233, citing Palestine Royal Commission.)
Many Arabs had come over from the surrounding Arab countries to share in the prosperity, which the Jews had brought to the area and most of those simply returned to their own villages.
None of This can in any way take away from the genuine suffering of the Arabs involved. While we can- and should- sympathize with them, we should also think of the 800,000 Jews (one of the lowest estimates- most sources give a figure of 850,000) who were driven out of the Arab countries at the same time
A new campaign has been initiated to identify Jewish property in Arab nations. The American Sephardi Federation has mailed questionnaires to 50,000 former Jewish residents of these countries, in which they are asked to list bank accounts and property they were forced to abandon when they left their homes. The countries involved are Libya, Morocco, Iraq, Syria, Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, and Yemen. Some 800,000 Jews fled from these countries after 1948. Bobby Brown, the Prime Minister's advisor for Diaspora Affairs, had only praise for the initiative. In a letter to the Federation's President, Leon Levy, Brown wrote, "...I congratulate you on your initiative and vision... Jews who fled Arab countries left behind personal and communal property accumulated over many generations, as well as historical and spiritual treasures, and not enough has been done to chronicle them... With the passage of time and the aging of the transitional generation, the task takes on added urgency... I will be happy to assist you in any way that I can..." Jerusalem Post, Arutz 7
“Jews of the Arab States were driven out of their ancient homes…shamefully deported after their property had been commandeered or taken over at the lowest possible valuation.” Sabri Jiryis, member of the Palestinian National Council quoted in “From time immemorial” by Peters, p. 29.
A second refugee population was created in 1967. After ignoring warnings to stay out of the war, King Hussein launched an attack on Jerusalem, Israel's capital. The UN estimated that during the fighting 175,000 Palestinians had fled for a second time and approximately 350,000 left for the first time. About 200,000 moved to Jordan, 115,000 to Syria and approximately 35,000 left Sinai for Egypt. Most of the Arabs who left had come from the West Bank.
In the 1967 Six Day War, between 125,000 (Israeli estimate) and 250,000 (UNRWA estimate) Arabs fled from Judea, Samaria and Gaza, which came under Israeli administration.
Of these, say some researchers, close on two-thirds were first-time refugees, the others were refugees from 1948 who fled once again.
According to the United Nations Relief Works Agency (UNRWA), in 1996 the number of refugees stood at 3.3 million, located as follows:
Jordan: In 10 camps - 242,922. Not in camps - 1.1 million
Judea and Samaria: In 20 camps - 147,302. Not in camps - 385,136
Gaza: In five camps - 378,279. Not in camps - 338,651
Lebanon: In 12 camps - 182,731. Not in camps - 169,937
Syria: In 10 camps - 89,472. Not in camps - 257, 919
TOTAL: In 57 camps - 1.04 million. Not in camps - 2.26 million.
THE ARAB - ISRAELI CONFLICT
WHO STARTED THE WAR IN 1947 ?
WHY DID THE ARABS LEAVE ISRAEL?
HOW MANY ARABS FLED ?
ARAB HELP FOR THEIR REFUGEES.
ARE THE JEWISH SETTLEMENTS ILLEGAL?
WHAT IF THE JEWS LOST ANY WAR ?
For further, more detailed information click on www.adespicabletruce.org.uk