Photo: Dalit Shacham
Fewer arrive at voting polls
Photo: Dalit Shacham
Elections 2013: 11% of voters live abroad
Though number of registered voters increases, turnout decreases, from 80% average until 1996 to 64.7% in 2009; most Israelis abroad do not vote
Some 5.1 million registered voters currently reside in Israel, according to data released Wednesday by the Central Bureau of Statistic. These numbers exclude some 560,000 people – some 11% of the voters – who are eligible to vote in the Israeli elections but live outside of Israel.


The CBS further found that since the 2009 elections for the 18th Knesset, the number of registered voters whose place of residence is Israel has increased by 7%. Of Israeli residents, 81% are Jewish, 15% are Arabs (Muslims, Arab Christians and Druze) and the remaining 4% are divided between Christians and voters who are unaffiliated with any religion.


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Since the recent Knesset elections, 47,000 people who do not reside in Israel have been registered as new voters, but according to the findings, most Israelis abroad do not vote. The CBS estimated that some of the registered voters living abroad might have passed away without the civil registry being notified.


In estimating all populations, however, the information points to a general decrease in voting percentages. In the 2009 elections, 64.7% of the registered voters cast their ballots, compared to 79.3% in 1996, and percentages ranging between 75% and 86.9% in the years before.


During the first Knesset elections, in 1949, when all registered voters were living in Israel, there were 506,567 registered voters. In the second Knesset elections, that number nearly doubled, and until today, the number of voters – including voters living outside Israel – has multiplied by 11.



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