Dr Mike Evans

Global Jewish population reaches 15.3 million on Rosh Hashanah

As Jews celebrate Rosh Hashanah to mark the beginning of the Jewish new year, the world’s Jewish population has reached 15.3 million.

The Jewish Agency shared the update in a Sunday report that showed an increase from 15.2 million last year.

The report noted that the total includes 7,080,000 in Israel, with another 500,000 eligible under the Law of Return though not currently counted in the latest figures.

Outside of Israel, more than 8.25 million Jews now live worldwide. Among Jews outside of Israel, about six million live in the U.S.

Up to 25.5 million people worldwide are currently estimated as eligible for Jewish citizenship under the Law of Return, offering the opportunity for Israel’s Jewish population to continue in the coming years.

Beyond Israel and the U.S., the countries noted with the highest numbers of Jewish people include France, Canada, the U.K., Argentina, and Russia.

Between Sept. 1 of last year and this year, approximately 26,000 Jews moved to Israel from Russia alone, while 14,000 came from Ukraine. Another 3,800 moved to Israel from the U.S.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog noted the world’s Jews in his remarks for the Jewish new year.

“Dear sisters and brothers from all over the world Jewish communities big and small Shanah Tovah to all of you!” he said. “As we welcome the Jewish New Year 5783 I would like to wish you all a sweet and happy New Year Our ancient Jewish tradition wisely connects the change of seasons with our changes of heart. Indeed, this twilight time between years invites us to embrace change as a people and as individuals.

“It invites us to reflect on our lives our choices, and our beliefs, it invites us to question how we can do things better in the coming year for ourselves, for our families, and for our communities,” he added.