The Magen Avraham Shul in Beirut has undergone extensive renovations and it is scheduled to reopen in the near future, the London-based al-Shark al-Awsat reports. The shul will serve the Lebanese capital’s estimated 100 remaining Jews.
Jewish community leader Isaac Arazi speaks of the shul located in a once Jewish populated area. The shul was originally constructed in 1926. Arazi explained that Jews in the Diaspora funded the restoration along with donations from Christians and Muslims.
Work on restoring the badly damaged shul got underway in 2009. The nation’s civil war took a heavy toll on the building. The reconstruction was government approved and obviously received unofficial approval from Hizbullah, a necessary reality for the renovations to take place.
The Times of Israel quotes Arazi stating “You can rest assured that if I was a Zionist-Israeli, I would not stay in Lebanon for a second,” Arazi told the paper. “We [the Lebanese Jewish community] have no connection to those who wanted to live in Palestine and kill innocent people.”
“We identify as Lebanese 100%,” said Arazi.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)