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February 05, 1993 - Image 39

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1993-02-05

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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Rabbis Watch
Cairo Cemetery

Jerusalem (JTA) — With the
consent of Egyptian au-
thorities, a team of Israeli
rabbis dedicated to the pres-
ervation of ancient Jewish
cemeteries has been keeping
watch at the Cairo Jewish
cemetery to ensure that no
damage is done to the site.
The Athra Kadisha associ-
ation established the watch
out of concern that construc-
tion work on a major new
highway in Cairo might
disrupt graves at the
cemetery, according to a
source in the group.
Athra Kadisha's head,
Rabbi David Schmidel,
along with Rabbi Shimon
Anschen, has been traveling
back and forth between
Israel and Egypt to super-
vise the association's guar-
ding of the cemetery. The
Egyptian authorities re-
portedly have given Athra
Kadisha their full consent
and cooperation.
The Egyptian highway is
to bypass the cemetery with
an overpass to avoid
desecrating the graves.
However, the cemetery has
been partially invaded by
squatters who, for lack of
better housing, have used
parts of the cemetery for
their homes.
Athra Kadisha is disclos-
ing its efforts in Egypt in
order to help the associa-
tion's campaign against con-
struction work planned for a
new junction near
Jerusalem's French Hill
neighborhood, where an-
cient Jewish burial caves are
located.
Orthodox opponents of the
Jerusalem construction have
repeatedly mentioned the
situation in Cairo, warning
that if burial caves were
desecrated in Israel, Jews
would have no case to pro-
test the desecration of Jew-
ish cemeteries abroad.
A ministerial committee
recently proposed to shift the
original site of the junction
and prevent desecration of
most of the burial caves.
However, opposition con-
tinues since even under the
new plan, one burial cave
would still be damaged.

Numerous Israeli set-
tlements, institutions and
streets are named for
American presidents —
among them the moshav of
Kfar Truman and the
Truman Research Institute
for Peace on Mt. Scopus, the
Givat Washington youth
village.

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