David Kadoch, of France who moved to Israel in August, talks to The Associated Press in Paris, Wednesday June 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)
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Increasing numbers of French Jews are leaving for Israel, citing dim economic prospects and a sense of being caught between an increasingly influential far right and militant Islam.France has the world's third-largest Jewish population after Israel and the United States -- about 500,000, according to rough estimates.The country annually welcomes 1,000 French youths for a year abroad and 70 percent of them decide to stay in Israel, according to Ariel Kandel, who runs the Jewish Agency for Israel in Paris.The agency, which works closely with the Israeli government, aims to strengthen ties between Jews in the diaspora and Israel and spends tens of millions of dollars each year to bring Jews to Israel permanently. The number of French Jews migrating to Israel has been around 2,000 annually since the mid-1990s, decreasing from a peak of 5,292 after the 1967 Six-Day War.Jewish Agency head Nathan Sharansky expects the French number to top out at over 5,000 this year.
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