Estimates of the Palestinian Refugee flight of 1948
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This article lists the various interim and final United Nations estimates for the number of Palestinian people who fled or were expelled from the area that became part of Israel after the 1948 Arab–Israeli War. It also provides other interim and final estimates for the number of Palestinian refugees for that period.
Estimate of number of people who left or fled the area captured by Israel
- 726,000 according to the Final Report of the United Nations Economic Survey Mission for the Middle East published by the United Nations Conciliation Commission, December 28, 1949.  (A/AC.25/6/Part.1 p. 21) [note 1]
- 711,000 according to the General Progress Report and Supplementary Report of the United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine, Covering the Period from 11 December 1949 to 23 October 1950, published by the United Nations Conciliation Commission, October 23, 1950. (U.N. General Assembly Official Records, 5th Session, Supplement No. 18, Document A/1367/Rev. 1)  [note 2]
- Emil Ghoury (Telegraph Beirut, September 1948) : 200,000 in June 1948, 300,000 in July 1948.
- 360,000 in September, 1948, according to the Progress Report of the United Nations Mediator on Palestine published by UN Mediator Count Folke Bernadotte, September 16, 1948. (U.N. General Assembly Official Records, 3rd Session, Supplement No. 11, Document A/648) [note 3]
- 472,000 in October, 1948, according to the Progress Report of the Acting United Nations Mediator on Palestine published by Acting UN Mediator Ralph Bunche, October 18, 1948. (UN General Assembly Official Records, 3rd Session Supplement No. 11A, Document A/689) [note 3]
Estimates of total number of people who registered as refugees
- 800,000 – 900,000 according to the Historical Survey of Efforts of the United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine to Secure the Implementation of Paragraph 11 of General Assembly Resolution 194 (III) published by the United Nations Conciliation Commission, October 2, 1961.  (A/AC.25/W.81/Rev.2)
- 875,998 refugees in June 1951, according to the Report of the Director of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East published by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, September 28, 1951. (U.N. General Assembly Official Records, 6th Session, Supplement No. 16, Document A/1905)  [note 4]
- 914,000 refugees in 1950, according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency website.  [note 5]
- 957,000 refugees in 1950 according to the Report of the Director of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East published by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, September 28, 1951. (U.N. General Assembly Official Records, 6th Session, Supplement No. 16, Document A/1905)  [note 6]
Other estimates of flight or refugees
- 400,000 "Israeli government estimate" according to Elia Zureik 
- 539,000 According to Dr. Walter Pinner, Dr.Econ, Halle-Wittenberg University, in his book How many Arab refugees: a critical study of UNRWA's Statistics and Reports Page 61 "The number of genuine refugees in 1948 was 539,000."
- 600,000 According to Joseph B. Schechtman The Arab Refugee Problem 1952 Philosophical Library. Page 16 "The number who fled could not have exceeded 600,000."
- 600,000 – 700,000 According to Nicole Brackman on www.aijac.org.au 
- 630,000 According to Yoram Ettinger on www.acpr.org.il 
- 700,000 "It is impossible to arrive at a definite persuasive estimate. My predeliction would be to opt for the loose contemporary British formula, that of 'between 600,000 and 760,000' refugees; but, if pressed, 700,000 is probably a fair estimate" – Benny Morris, The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited, p603-4.
- 720,000 According to www.jafi.org citing "Irving Howe and Carl Gershman (eds.), Israel, the Arabs and the Middle East (New York: Bantam, 1972), p. 168." 
- 750,000 – 800,000 "Private Palestinian sources" according to Elia Zureik 
- 800,000- According to Amira Howeidy on Al-Ahram Weekly online. 
- 800,000 According to Elia Zureik. 
- 800,000 According to Middle East Journal. 
- 800,000 – Walter Eytan, head of Israeli Foreign Affairs Ministry, in a private letter of 1950 (quoted by Morris, Birth...Revisited, p602)
- 800,000 – 900,000 "Palestinian figures" according to Elia Zureik 
- 804,767 According to Salman Abu-Sitta on www.palestineremembered.com  [note 7]
- 850,000 "United Nations estimate" according to Elia Zureik 
- 900,000+ According to www.humanrightshouse.org. 
- 900,000 According to Abdel-Azim Hammad on Al-Ahram Weekly.  (1999)
- 935,000 According to Salman Abu-Sitta (From Refugees to Citizen at Home: Al Naqba Anatomy ).
- 200,000+ by May, 1948 according to Joseph E. Katz on www.eretzyisroel.org. 
- 250,000 by May, 1948 according to www.mideastweb.org 
- 300,000 by May, 1948 according to Noam Chomsky pp. 131–132 Understanding Power: The Indispensable Chomsky 
- 380,000 by 15 May 1948 according to Dr. Ilan Pappe of Haifa University, "The Making of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1947–51", London: I.B. Tauris, 1992. pp. 85, 96
- 500,000 by June, 1948 according to Salman Abu-Sitta (From Refugees to Citizen at Home: Al Naqba Anatomy ).
- 630,000 by July, 1948 according to Salman Abu-Sitta (From Refugees to Citizen at Home: Al Naqba Anatomy ).
- 700,000 by October, 1948 according to Salman Abu-Sitta (From Refugees to Citizen at Home: Al Naqba Anatomy ).
- This estimate by the UN Conciliation Commission has been repeated in a number of other UN documents , . The number was calculated by estimating the number of non-Jews living within the borders of Israel at the end of 1947 and subtracting the number of remaining non-Jews living within the borders of Israel after the war. It does not include an estimated 25,000 border-line refugees – refugees who lost their livelihood because their village land was located in Israeli-occupied territory, while the village house remained in Arab territory. The figure was later revised down by the UN Concilation Commission to 711,000. 
- The Committee believed the estimate to be "as accurate as circumstances permit", and attributed the higher number on relief to, among other things, "duplication of ration cards, addition of persons who have been displaced from area other than Israel-held areas and of persons who, although not displaced, are destitute."
- Figure refers only to people registered as refugees.
- Figure inflated because "all births are eagerly announced, the deaths wherever possible are passed over in silence, and as the birthrate is high in any case, a net addition of 30,000 names a year".  The figure includes descendants of the Palestinian refugees born after the Palestinian exodus up to June 1951.
- Figure does not match official UNRWA estimates submitted to the UN.
- Figure later revised down to 876,000 by UNRWA after "many false and duplicate registrations weeded out." 
- Figure calculated by using the official village statistics of 1944/1945 and upgraded to 1948/1949 by taking a net natural increase of 3.8% for four years. The number of non-Jews remaining in Israel was then deducted from the total count.