Arab Population Surges in America

December 3, 2003

Source: The Associated Press

On December 3, 2003 The Associated Press reported that "the Arab population in the United States has nearly doubled in the past two decades, according to the Census Bureau's first report on the group. Experts cited liberalized U.S. immigration laws and unrest in the Middle East that led many people to come to America. The bureau counted nearly 1.2 million Arabs in the United States in 2000, compared with 860,000 in 1990 and 610,000 in 1980. About 60 percent trace their ancestry to three countries: Lebanon, Syria and Egypt. The census report stops at 2000, so there is no data to measure the impact of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. But tighter immigration procedures imposed after then have reduced the flow of Arabs to the United States. While earlier Arab immigrants came from countries with large Christian populations, newer arrivals come from heavily Muslim countries such as Iraq and Yemen."