Arutz Sheva on Monday got the chance to speak with some of the 19 new olim from Yemen who last Monday were brought home to Israel in a secret operation.
The Yemenite Jews, who brought with them an ancient 800-year-old Torah scroll, are currently living at an absorption center in Be'er Sheva as they adapt to life in the modern Jewish state.
Yahya Ya'akov Tahari spoke about how moved he was by coming home "to the land of our forefathers."
"For a long time already we wanted to immigrate to Israel," he said, noting that it wasn't easy due to the dangers posed by Yemenite Arabs. "It was just very difficult to live with them," he added, recalling that they were forced to sell their homes for half their value because no one agreed to buy from them.
Currently it is a dangerous time to be in Yemen, said Zahav Tahari, noting on the civil war taking place between Iran-backed Houthi rebels and the local government which is backed by Saudi Arabia and other Arab states.
He revealed that theft was a huge problem, and the local Arabs "don't let Jews leave until they empty the house out totally."
According to Tahari, anti-Semitism is rapidly getting worse, and currently it is very dangerous even when compared to just ten or 20 years ago when Jews could walk around more freely.
He added that the Yemenite government won't let Jews leave, despite its animosity towards them, "because they know they're going to Israel so they don't want anyone to go."
Given that situation, Israel launched a secret operation rescuing them from Yemen. Now only 50 Jews remain in Yemen from one of the most ancient Jewish communities that dates back thousands of years.
The vast majority of Yemenite Jews fled violence in the country in the 1950s following the rebirth of the Jewish state of Israel. A full 850,000 Jewish refugees were forced out of Arab countries in those years, losing untold fortunes in the process.