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May 6, 2015 11:29 am

Hundreds of Jews Make Pilgrimage to Ancient Tunisian Synagogue, Despite Terror Threats

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Hundreds of Jews are traveling to visit the ancient El Ghriba Synagogue in Djerba. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

JNS.org – Hundreds of Jews are making the pilgrimage to the ancient Tunisian synagogue of El Ghriba on the island of Djerba, despite the warnings of a possible terror attack against Jewish targets.

“There is a lot of security, there are soldiers and police everywhere and that is very reassuring to us,” French-Jewish tourist Lorine Bendayan told AFP.

Tunisian security forces have erected barriers and checkpoints around the Jewish district on the island.

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On Sunday, Tunisia’s Interior Minister Mohamed Nahem Gharsalli visited Djerba with other Tunisian senior security officials to assess the preparations for the pilgrimage, promising that the Tunisian government will protect the Jewish population.

“My visit is part of monitoring the latest preparations ahead of the pilgrimage to El Ghriba and the mobilisation of security and military forces and the civil protection and Navy to ensure the success of festivities,” said Gharsalli, AllAfrica.com reported.

Gharsalli added that “Tunisia is able to protect Jews and all its guests better than any other country.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Saturday that Israel has received “concrete threats” of terror attacks against Jewish and Israeli targets in Tunisia.

In the past year North Africa has become a hotbed for Islamic extremists. Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State are both active in neighboring Libya, where their fighters have murdered dozens of Christians.

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