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Interview w Chief Rabbi of Iran
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday June 23, 2020
I've Been Thinking:

I read with great interest an interview with Iranian Chief Rabbi Yehuda Garami.

The interview was published in Al Monitor, an Arab website founded in 2012.
In his interview the rabbi gives spectacular insight into Iran and the Jewish community. Obviously, Irans Jews do not publicly support Israel.

The community appears to be stable in numbers and able to provide for their own needs and education.

Rabbi Garami says:
I estimate that there are between 20,000 and 25,000 Jews in the country. Most of them live in Tehran, Shiraz, Esfahan and Karmanshah, though there are other, small communities too.

He went on to discuss the state of the community, saying, We have total freedom of religion. All the synagogues are open, and Torah classes take place there. We have all sorts of educational institutions too, including elementary and middle schools.

About security and safety he says:
Unlike in Europe, for example, we do not have guards outside our synagogues and schools, and our personal safety is excellent. Of course, we sometimes encounter people who are anti-Semitic, but that happens everywhere. Most of the population respects us and lives in peace with us. What is important is that in Iran there is no such concept as organized attacks on Jews.

Is the interview 100% accurate probably not. But it does show an important side of Iran and Iranian Jewish life.

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24 June 2020 09:13 AM in Thoughts


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