The fair, run by the World Zionist Organization in collaboration with the Netanya Municipality, aimed to encourage the immigration of French Jews to Israel, where many already spend their summers in Netanya as tourists.
“First of all what is happening – let’s say outside noises – in France. The feeling in the community is that there’s no future,” he said, noting that in addition to problems of anti- Semitism that many Jews face in France, other economic and legal circumstances often drive Jews to leave for Israel.
“The conditions in France in a way tell the people ‘find your future somewhere [else],’” Feuer said.
The WZO has seen a rise in the number of French citizens making aliya so far in 2013, Feuer said, as 2,500 are expected to immigrate to Israel by the end of the year.
The organization says this is a 40 percent increase from 2012, when about 1,800-1,900 French citizens made aliya.
“The community of France is very traditional, with strong Jewish and Zionist identities,” Feuer said.
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