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1.2m Arab Muslims in Israel, 35% under the age of 14

August 31, 2017 at 12:51 am

Palestinians gather to celebrate outside the Al-Aqsa Mosque following the removal of Israeli security measures at the entrances to Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem on 28 July 2017 [Enes Canlı/Anadolu Agency]

According to the data from the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics, the number of Muslims in Israel, including occupied Jerusalem, reached 1,534, 000 in 2016 (including 320.000 Jerusalemites) constituting up to 17.7 % of the population.

These data, which was published on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha, showed that the number of Muslims increased during 2016 by 36 thousand. This indicates that the rate of population growth remained constant over the last three years at 2.4% a year, the highest rate of any group in the country.

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Jerusalem has the largest concentration of Muslims of any city, with 320.000 Muslim inhabitants, making up to 36.2% of the total. Moreover, Jerusalem comprises 21% of the total Muslim population of Israel (occupied Jerusalem). Rahat, a city in the Negev desert, is next with a population of 64.3 thousand Muslims.

The data revealed that the fertility rate (the average number of births per woman) among Muslims is in decline. The rate decreased from 4.7 births per woman in 2000 to 3.29. Yet, this rate is still the highest in the country, in comparison to that of the Jews, Christian Arabs and the Druze Arabs.

The Muslim community is relatively young. The number of children under 14 is 35% (534.3 thousand), while the number of the elderly people above 65 is 3.9% (59.8 thousand).

These data also showed that the number of unemployed Muslims is much higher than that of the Jews and Christian Arabs at 4.7%, slightly higher than that of the Druze Arabs (4.2%).

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In terms of higher education, it was revealed that there has been an increase in the number of those who obtained academic degrees among Muslims. It grew from 7.3% in 2015 to 7.7 % in 2016. However, the number of those who obtained academic degrees is still low compared to the number in the country in general, which reached 18.8%.

In addition to that, the 2015 data dealt with the distribution of the household expenses, where the total monthly expenses within Muslim families was 12.202 shekels, compared to 15.930 shekels for a Jewish family. Yet Muslim families are bigger, with 4.7 members in comparison with 3.1 within the Jewish family.

  • According to the distribution of the expenses, it was shown that Muslims spend 23% of their expenses on food, compared to 15.5 % for the Jewish population.
  • The percentage of housing expenses for Muslims reaches 19.7% of the total, compared to 25.5% among Jews.
  • For household expenses, Muslim famies spend 1223 shekels monthly, whereas the Jewish families spend 1521 shekels.
  • Muslim families spend 640 shekels on furniture and household items and around 668 shekels monthly on clothes and shoes, whereas the Jewish family spend 557 shekels and 463 shekels, respectively.
  • Health expenses within Muslim families reach 566 shekels monthly, while Jewish families spend 935 shekels.
  • When it comes to education, culture and housing, Muslim families spend 1110 shekels monthly compared to Jewish families who spend 1958 shekels.
  • On transportation and communication, Muslim families spend 2453 shekel monthly, whereas Jewish families spend 3194.
  • On other products and services, Muslim families spend 899 shekels monthly, while Jewish families spend 769 shekels.
  • The figures revealed that in the same year, the rate of using microwave reached 67.5% while Jewish families’  use of the same device reached 88.3%.
  • The number of the freezers (not refrigerators) among Muslims is twice that of the Jews, reaching 41.8% compared to 20.2%.
  • The rate of using the dishwashers does not exceed 18.2% among Muslims, compared to 43.1% among Jews.
  • 64.7 % of Muslims use computers, compared to 82.4% of Jews.
  • When it comes to the internet, data reveals that 37.8 are connected to the internet, whereas the percentage reaches 78.8% among the Jews.

The data also showed that 89.5% of Muslims watch TV via satellite whereas cable TV subscribers’ percentage is only 4.6 %. Among Jews, the percentage of the cable TV subscribers reaches 67.9%, whereas the percentage of those who use the satellite TV is only 4.8%.