Rising Russian immigration to Israel is being driven partly by anxieties over Moscow’s increasingly authoritarian policies, a spokesman for the Russian Jewish community told The Jerusalem Post on Monday.
The number of Russians arriving in Israel in the first quarter of 2015 was nearly 50 percent higher than that experienced during the corresponding period last year, according to an internal Jewish Agency report cited by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency last week. 1,515 Jews made the move between January and March, up from 1,016 in 2014.
“The political situation of the last years has become much more tight than it was before,” said Boruch Gorin, a senior figure in the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia.
People are unsure of their future and do not know if Russia will “be closed as before in Soviet times,” he explained, adding that the pressure applied to opposition groups has been worrying to members of the Jewish community, many of whom are liberals.