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Daily Israel Report

'I am a Refugee' Campaign Launch Monday

First international conference to highlight the issue of the Jewish refugees from Arab lands to be held in Jerusalem.
By Yoni Kempinski & Gil Ronen
First Publish: 9/9/2012, 9:13 PM

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in conjunction with the Ministry of Pensioners Affairs and the World Jewish Congress, will hold the first international conference to highlight the issue of the Jewish refugees from Arab countries Monday at the David Citadel Hotel in Jerusalem.

Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon will speak about a plan of action to make the issue prominent in the international arena, including placing it on the United Nations' agenda and passing resolutions in parliaments around the world.

Parliamentarians and experts from around the world will participate, providing insight into the issue and discussing how to put the plan into action. The participants will also meet some of the Jews expelled or forced out from Arab countries, who will tell their stories.

Many Jews who had lived in Arab countries for generations were driven from their homes as a result of anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish riots that broke out in the Arab countries following the declaration of the Jewish state. Between 1948 and 1952, 856,000 Jews from Arab countries became refugees.

The campaign's Facebook page features personal stories of Israelis from Arab countries who were expelled from their homes and their countries, usually after their property was confiscated and their rights were taken from them by the rulers.