Just in time for Yom Ha'atzma'ut, the Central Bureau of Statistics released data on Israel's population. On the state's 65th anniversary, Israel had over 8 million residents, a nearly ten-fold increase over the number that lived here in 1948.
A total of 8,018,000 people live in the State of Israel on Independence Day 2013, the CBS said. When the state was established on the fifth of the Hebrew month of Iyar in 1948, that number was a mere 806,000. Today, there are 6,042,000 Jews (75% of the country's population) living in Israel today, along with 1,658,000 Muslim and Christian Arabs (20.7% of the population). The country also has an additional 318,000 (4%) residents classified as “other,” including non-Arab Christians and members of other religions.
Israel's population grew by 138,000 since last Yom Ha'atzma'ut, a growth rate of 1.8%. In 2011, it was announced that over 70% of the Jewish population were born in Israel, with more than half second-generation Israelis. In 1948, only 35% were “native Sabras.”
The rise of the metropolitan area has been another important development in Israel over the past decades, the CBS said. In 1948, only one city – Tel Aviv-Jaffa – hand more than 100,000 residents. Today, there are six cities with more than 200,000 residents, including Jerusalem, Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Haifa, Rishon Lezion, Ashdod, and Petah Tikvah.