Is there Intra-Israeli Racism?

Dr. Zeev Hanin, Chief Scientist of the Ministry of Absorption: There are difficulties and struggles, but this is not racism.

Yoni Kempinski, | updated: 20:20

Dr. Zeev Hanin
Dr. Zeev Hanin
Israel news photo: Yoni Kempinski

The Ashdod Immigration and Absorption Conference dealt with the question – is there racism in Israel against immigrants?

Participants related to the difficulties of immigrants from the former Soviet Union and Ethiopia during their absorption into the Israeli society. The Absorption Ministry presented a poll which displayed a hostile attitude of the Israeli society towards the immigrant community. Arutz Sheva TV spoke with Dr. Zeev Hanin, Chief Scientist of the Ministry of Absorption, who determined that there are difficulties and struggles, but determined that the word 'racism' does not describe the phenomenon.

One of the results of the poll showed that 52% of the Israeli public believes that new immigrants are the cause of the rise in crime in Israel. To contradict this disturbing finding Southern District Police Commander Yohanan Danino attended the conference and presented data which showed that the percentage of police records filed against immigrants from Ethiopia and Eastern Europe in 2009 match the percentage of immigrants in the society.

In Israel, the word 'racism' is often used with regard to all forms of bias against ethnic groups, nations or communities.