Shorts: World

Memorial sought for Mountain Jews

Azerbaijan’s Jewish leaders sought permission to put up a memorial for the several thousand Mountain Jews they say were murdered by Armenians in 1918.

The Baku Sun reported that the Jewish leaders made the request to President Ilham Aliyev at a gathering last month at the Human Rights Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of Azerbaijan. The Jewish leaders cited research saying that some 3,000 Mountain Jews, along with tens of thousands of Azeris, were murdered in the region of Guba by Armenian bandits and nationalists — an incident marked by the Azeris as genocide.

Historians are still investigating the killings, which they say were covered up for decades by the communist regime. Around 40,000 Mountain Jews remain scattered about the remote passes of the mostly Muslim Caucasus. — jta

Tunisian Jews mark annual pilgrimage

Some 5,000 Jews celebrated the annual El Ghriba pilgrimage in Tunisia on Sunday, May 6.

Celebrants paraded through the streets of Djerba to the El Ghriba synagogue, the oldest in North Africa. The gathering was heavily secured by police five years after a 2002 terrorist attack against the synagogue that killed 21 German tourists. Al Qaida was suspected of perpetrating the attack.

Among those attending this year’s were Israeli lawmaker David Tal and Tunisian Tourism Minister Tijani Haddad. Fewer than 2,000 of Tunisia’s 10.8 million inhabitants are Jewish. — jta