The number of Jews and Palestinians living between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean will be equal by 2016, according to estimates by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS). According to the data, there are currently 11.6 million Palestinians across the globe.
According to the PCBS, by 2016 there will be 6.5 million Palestinians and a similar number of Jews in Israel. By 2020, the Palestinians will outnumber the Jews – they are estimated to number 7.2 million compared with 6.9 million Jews.
- CBS: Israel home to 8 Million citizens Egypt official: Israel will be wiped out in a decade
- Op-Ed: Lieberman good for Palestinians
According to the data, there are 4.4 million Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip; 1.4 million in Israel (Arab-Israelis); 5.5 million in Arab states and 655,000 in the rest of the world.
The PCBS report suggests that in the West Bank alone there are 2.7 million Palestinians compared with Gaza's 1.7 million. Of those, 44% are considered refugees. The data also point to a drop in the size of the average Palestinian family – 5.6 people in 2012 compared with 6.4 in 1997.
"This projection could lead to a demographic crisis which could jeopardize the two-state solution and lead to a de-facto one-state solution," PLO official Hanan Ashrawi told Ynet.
"This solution will not be convenient both for the Israelis and the Palestinians. If things go on this way, we will eventually be the majority but we are giving Israel the chance to realize that the Palestinians can have a democratic state alongside it."
Ashrawi estimated that the Israeli leadership is aware of the "demographic problem" but feels it can do whatever it wants on the ground without being held accountable for it.
"The Israeli government better understand that we're not going anywhere and that it will have to accept the principle of a Palestinian state," she said.
- Receive Ynetnews updates
directly to your desktop