Report: Government told of 14,000 Russian aliyah requests — number actually 1,400

A government body erroneously told the prime minister that there had been a huge jump in Russian Jews’ requests to make aliyah, Walla news reports.

A representative for Nativ, the liaison organization to Jews in the former Soviet Union, told ministers there had been 14,000 such requests since the start of the invasion of Ukraine on February 24 — but the number was actually 1,400.

The report says Naftali Bennett was amazed by the supposed number and told Nativ to immediately call up as many employees as possible to handle the influx (all of 2021 saw some 7,000 immigrants from Russia).

But Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked was doubtful of the figure and asked to double-check. Nativ later apologized, saying the number was in fact 1,400 — still a relatively high number for such a short period, but far below the initial figure.

Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked speaks a press conference at the Finance Ministry in Jerusalem, October 31, 2021. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

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