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Jerba



Jerba
Introduction

1. Houmt Souq

2. Diversity

3. Borj el-Kebir

4. Zone touristique

5. Hara Sghira

6. Hara Kebira

7. Guellala

8. Lonely mosque

9. Mosque of the Turkish mother

10. Jama' Fadloud

11. Jama' Ghizen

12. Jama' Mastiri

13. Jama' Mazline

14. Jama' Mezraya

15. Jama' Tajdid

16. Underground oil-press in Midoun

17. Aghir

18. Sponges and octopuses

Practicalities




















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JERBA / HARA SGHIRA
The synagogue
The little community of Hara Sghira is not really remarkable, a main street with some grocery stores and a café or two. But just out of the centre, to the east, past the school, and a mosque in typical Jerban style, the main centre of the Jerban Jews are found, the Ghriba synagogue. This synagogue serves as the focal point of Jews in North Africa. This place is the place where a stone fell from heaven, and where miracles were performed when the sanctuary once was built. While this has been a holy place for 1400 years, the present buildings are not more than 75 years old. Most of the construction is a hostel for pilgrims, but rarely fills up very much anymore.

Hara Sghira, Jerba, Tunisia

The synagogue can be entered by non-Jews, as long as they leave a small gift (money), and the men wear kippahs. The interior is only slightly more interesting than the modest exterior, a little bit to glaring for most people's taste, but it is told that the inner sanctuary contains one of the oldest Torahs that is still preserved.
The relationship between the 100 Jews and the Muslim majority seems to be relaxed, but the Jews of Jerba is counted as very conservative, and have faced anti-Jewish acts many times. Last time was in 1985 when three worshipers were gunned down inside the synagogue.




By Tore Kjeilen