Watch: Israel welcomes 201 new immigrants from North America

201 new immigrants landed in Israel this morning aboard a special Aliyah flight organized by the Nefesh B’Nefesh organization. “This is a dream come true,” one of them said. They were greeted by hundreds of friends, family members and soldiers who came to celebrate this joyous occasion with them.
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201 North American Jews landed at Ben-Gurion Airport on Tuesday morning aboard a special flight organized by Nefesh B’Nefesh. 51 of them are single and hoping to find love in their new country. 25% of them plan to settle down outside of the main cities in Israel. “This is a dream come true,” said a new immigrant from Canada who will live in Beit Shemesh.

“I couldn’t close my eyes all of the flight and I barely slept the last month,” said 18-year-old Ron from California. “I need to be pinched so that I know that this is really happening. I’ve been waiting for this moment my whole life- to be Israeli.”

Photo Credit: Guy Veron/Channel 2 News

“We were working so long on the decision to immigrate to Israel,” said a newcomer who came with his family from Miami. “The children now understand where we are. They’ve been waiting for this.”

Aboard the flight were 78 children, among them 5 pairs of twins; 34 families; and 13 young people who will soon enlist into the IDF or volunteer for Sherut Leumi (national service instead of the army). The new immigrants came from various states across North America including Georgia, South Carolina, Wisconsin, Virginia, Texas, Missouri, Michigan, Maryland, New Jersey and New York. When they deboarded the plane, they received a warm welcome by hundreds of family members, friends and soldiers who came to celebrate this memorable moment with them.

Photo Credit: Guy Veron/Channel 2 News

“The immigrants from the U.S. are coming out of a desire and passion to take part in the great national project of the Jewish people,” Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky said. “We need to ensure that the State of Israel will continue to be a place where every Jew will feel at home and a place where the immigrants feel confident in [their] connection to history, to the roots and [to] national identity of the Jewish people.”

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