North American families arrive in Israel to build new lives as immigrants

A group of 231 Jewish immigrants from the United States and Canada were welcomed as they landed in Tel Aviv on Tuesday to begin a new life in Israel.

Israel's Law of Return accords any Jew and eligible non-Jewish relatives the legal right to assisted immigration and settlement in Israel, as well as Israeli citizenship. 41 families were on board the flight.

New immigrants predominately move to Israeli settlements in the West Bank, a key point of contention in potential new peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. 

The Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier who spent five years in captivity in the Gaza Strip before his release in 2011, had accompanied the migrants on their journey.

-- The Associated Press and The European Pressphoto Agency contributed to this report