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Ex-Official Confirms That Israelis Took Yemeni Babies for Adoption

September 18, 1997| Reuters

JERUSALEM — A former senior Israeli figure has broken a decades-long silence to confirm that authorities snatched babies from Yemeni immigrants nearly 50 years ago and gave them to European-born Jews for adoption.

"This stain, the abduction of Yemeni children, is the most disgraceful stain on the state of Israel," Rabbi Menachem Porush, once a political kingpin as a lawmaker and leader of the ultra-Orthodox Agudat Yisrael party, said today.

"They kidnapped children," an emotion-choked Porush told Israel's Channel Two Television in an interview. "Large families arrived from Yemen, but we took their children."

Israelis of Yemeni origin have long claimed that authorities took hundreds of infants between 1948 and 1950 and gave them to adoptive families of European origin.

The birth mothers said they were told the chidren had died.

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