Report tells story of Arab abuses against Jews in 1948

Crowds came to Adas' estate to gawk at the dead Jew, Soussa says. It all happened in the summer of 1948.

Fifty-five years later, Soussa relayed the story at a press conference here on Monday to release a document charging Arab countries with systematic persecution of Jews amid the creation of the state of Israel.

The document, published by Justice for Jews from Arab Countries — a group formed in September by a coalition of Jewish organizations — lists human rights violations in several Arab countries where Jews lost the right to vote or even their citizenship and suffered pogroms, confiscations and intimidation.

Leaders of the Justice for Jews group flew to Israel to hand the report to President Moshe Katsav on Tuesday.

Through quotes from Arab leaders on the partition of Palestinian mandate and newspaper articles around 1948, the document builds the case that Arab countries colluded in their persecution of the Jews, hoping to force them to emigrate and steal their property.

"From the sheer volume of such state-sanctioned discriminatory measures, replicated in so many Arab countries and instituted in such a parallel fashion, one is drawn to the conclusion that such evidence suggests a common pattern of repressive measures, if not collusion, against Jews by Arab governments," the report states.

More than 850,000 Jews left Arab countries after the 1948 Arab-led war on Israel. Similar numbers of Arabs fled Israel around the same time.

While Israel absorbed the Jewish refugees, Arab countries kept the Palestinians in camps and refused to give them citizenship, using their plight as a weapon in the political struggle against the Jewish state. Today, the number of Palestinian refugees and their descendants tops 4 million, according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which provides them with services.