Qatar Quietly Helping Yemenite Jews Reach Israel?
A Jerusalem source says that a group of of about 60 Jews from Yemen have arrived in Israel from Doha on a Qatari airline.
The operation was carried out under the auspices of the State of Israel and is intended to extract the remaining 400 Jews from Yemen.
The group arrived at Ben Gurion International Airport, according to “informed Israeli sources” quoted by Manar.com, the website of an Arabic-language newspaper produced in Jerusalem's Sheikh Jarrah (Shimon HaTzaddik) neighborhood and headed by managing editor Ismail Ajwa.
Very little information has been available about the fate of Yemenite Jews over the past year as the country is torn apart in the battle between government troops, tribal factions and terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda.
The Israeli source quoted by the newspaper added that preparations are being made to continue transporting the few remaining Jews from Yemen to Israel in within the coming months.
According to a report published earlier this month in The Yemen Post, just 60 Jews have left Yemen since 2010, complaining of harassment and discrimination.
The non-governmental Yemeni Sawa'a Organization for Anti-Discrimination estimated this week that about 300 Jews are still living in the Riyada area, and 100 in the capital of Sanaa. In a statement on its Facebook page, the group called a recent decision by the Yemeni government to cut financial aid and other services for Jews in Sana'a "unfortunate and unacceptable." The Jews have been forced to live in a guarded compound in the capital since they were driven from their homes by the Islamist Al Qaeda terrorists in 2007.
Israeli Cabinet ministers and Knesset members, including a number from the Sephardic hareidi-religious Shas party, have been heavily involved in supervising the project to rescue the Yemenite Jews, along with other institutions.
The widow of Moshe Nahari, who was murdered in Yemen four years ago, has already made aliyah (immigrated) to Israel along with four of her children, having arrived in Tel Aviv late last summer. The family was assisted by the Jewish Agency.