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Sources and Reliability of data on population in Palestine, British Mandate: A Survey of Palestine: Volume I - Page 160. Chapter VI: Population: C.
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Posted on October 28, 2007
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CHAPTER VI.

20. From table 10 it can be seen that considerable changes have occurred in the religious composition of the inhabitants of the various sub-districts. The percentage of Jews in the population has increased mainly in the sub-districts of Jaffa (from 37 per cent. in 1922 to 7? P'" cent. in 1944), Haifa (from 15.5 per cent. to 46.5 percent.), Beisan (from 7 percent. to 30 percent.), Tulkarm (from 0.1 per cent. to 18 per cent.), Nazareth (from 3 per cent. to 16.5 per cent.), and Ramie (from 8 per cent. to 24 per cent.). The percentage of Moslems, and in some instances of Christians, in these sub-districts has decreased accordingly. It is seen from the table that Christians constitute a considerable percentage of the population only in the sub-districts of Nazareth, Jerusalem, Ramallah , Acre and Haifa.

From table 9c it can be seen that Moslems constitute the overwhelming majority in medium-sized towns (15,000 to 45,000) and a very considerable majority in villages and in towns with 5,000 to l5,000 inhabitants. Jews are the majority in the large towns and in towns with less than 5,000 inhabitants.

C. Sources and reliability o! data on population in Palestine.

21. Parts A and R of this note have dealt with the development of the population of Palestine between 1022 and 1944 and the changes in its geographical distribution. In this section the sources and reliability of the data are discussed.

22. Reliable data on the whole population of Palestine have been collected only twice in modern times, the first census of population having been taken on October 23rd, 1922 and the second on November 18th, 1031. The second census was a very detailed one, conducted along scientific lines and gave a very complete picture of the demography of the country. The census of 1931 was intended to be the first in a series of quinquennial censuses which should have given periodic information on the rapidly changing structure of population in Palestine. Unfortunately, however, the disturbances of 1936-39 and, afterwards, the war prevented the taking of the censuses planned for ln36 and 1941. Preparations are now being made for the taking of a census in the autumn of ln46.

23. Since the census of 1931 regular quarterly and annual estimates of the population bv religions have been prepared by the Government Department of Statistics (see the annual estimates for l!l32-44. in table 1). These estimates cannot, however, claim the same reliability as the censuses. In all countries post-censal estimates become increasingly unreliable with the passage of time

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