856,000 Jews left their homes in Arab countries from 1948 until the early 1970s; 260,000 reached Israel in 1948-1951, 600,000 by 1972. The Jews of Egypt and Libya were expelled while those of Iraq, Yemen, Syria, Lebanon and North Africa left as a result of a coordinated effort among Arab governments to create physical and political insecurity. Most were forced to abandon their property. By 2002 these Jews and their descendants constituted about 40% of Israel’s population. The main representative body of this group, the World Organization of Jews from Arab Countries, (WOJAC) estimates that Jewish property abandoned in Arab countries would be valued today at more than $300 billion and Jewish-owned real-estate left behind in Arab lands at 100,000 square kilometers (four times the size of the State of Israel). The organization asserts that the Jewish exodus was the result of a deliberate policy decision taken by the Arab league.
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