Top 5 reasons Jerusalem is such a thorny issue

By , Staff writer

3. Demographics

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    Cranes and labors helped the Israeli community of Har Homa, in southeast Jerusalem, grow from 763 residents at the beginning of the decade to 9,615 residents in 2008.
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Since Israel captured East Jerusalem in 1967, the Palestinian population has quadrupled, reducing the Jewish majority in Jerusalem as a whole to 65 percent. In a bid to cement Israeli sovereignty, some 2,000 Jews have moved into strategic locations around the Old City. Steadily expanding communities elsewhere in East Jerusalem have brought the total number of Jews there to nearly 200,000. But 17,000 Israeli Jews, mainly young people, emigrate every year, seeking better jobs and a higher quality of life.

If current trends hold, the Jerusalem Institute of Israel Studies has predicted, the city will be split 50-50 between Jews and Arabs by 2035.

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