Israel Remembers 23,320 Fallen Soldiers Since 1860

Defense Ministry figures reveal 116 security force personnel killed in last year alone, with 2,538 civilians murdered by terror since 1950.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Soldier mourns at Mount Herzl military cemetery
Soldier mourns at Mount Herzl military cemetery
Miriam Alster/Flash 90

Israel marked its annual day of remembrance for fallen soldiers and terror victims on Wednesday, with the Jewish state standing to attention for two minutes while sirens wailed.

Over the past year alone, 116 security force personnel have been killed in the line of duty, according to Defense Ministry figures.

In total, Israel remembers 23,320 fallen since 1860 in fighting for the national cause.

The count began from that year given a rise of Arab violence targeting Jews around the time that Jews established the first neighborhood outside the walls of Jerusalem's Old City, Mishkenot Shananim. The first victim of Arab terrorism as listed in official annals was murdered in 1873.

National Insurance Institute figures show that an additional 2,538 civilians have been murdered by terrorism since 1950, including 122 foreign visitors.

Remembrance ceremonies began at sunset on Tuesday and continue until nightfall on Wednesday, when the somber mood gives way to raucous celebrations marking 67 years since the declaration of the renascent modern Jewish state on May 14, 1948.

The date is marked according to the Jewish calendar and this year it falls on April 22.

New population figures released ahead of Independence Day by the Central Bureau of Statistics showed Israel's population now stands at 8,345,000.

Of that number, 6,251,000 or 74.9% are Jews and 1,730,000 or 20.7% are Arabs.

The remaining 340,000 listed as "other" comprise non-Arab Christians, members of other religions and those unclassified in the population register. Another 310,000 constitute Palestinian Arab residents of eastern Jerusalem.