Six hundred olim (immigrants to Israel) are scheduled to "come home" Wednesday morning, leading a wave of aliyah that the Jewish Agency says will be the largest from France since 1972. The crowd will arrive on two El Al and Israir planes at virtually the same time from Paris and Marseilles, and President Shimon Peres will greet the new immigrants at Ben Gurion airport.
The rate of aliyah from France is 10 percent higher than for the same period last year, and more than 3,000 are expected to arrive by the end of the year. The previous high was 2,350 in 1972, one year before the Yom Kippur War, when aliyah from Europe and North America dropped drastically.
Jerusalem, Netanya and Ashdod will absorb most of the new olim.