May 26, 1992 |
In the midst of the land of Israel's worst enemy, they are one of the oldest Jewish communities in the world. Their ancient synagogues languish along the banks of the Euphrates River, and the sound of their prayers can be heard in the old cobbled streets near the tomb of the Islamic warrior Saladin. Their kosher butchers stand quietly next to mosques.
February 22, 1993 |
President Hafez Assad promised Sunday to allow the remaining members of Syria's ancient but dwindling Jewish community to leave the country if they wish, U.S. officials said. Assad made the promise to Secretary of State Warren Christopher after Christopher asked about reports that Jews' requests for exit visas were being denied, they said. In response to U.S. pressure, Assad decreed last year that Jews could travel abroad for the first time.
December 6, 1993 |
In a gesture clearly intended to improve the atmosphere for Middle East peace talks, Syrian President Hafez Assad agreed Sunday to allow U.S. investigators to visit Syria and Lebanon to try to learn the fate of seven Israeli soldiers who are missing in action, some for more than a decade. At the same time, Assad agreed to allow all remaining Syrian Jews, between 800 and 850 of them, to leave the country by the end of this month if they wish to do so.
November 22, 1994 |
When Khodor Kabariti left them a few months ago, the vine-covered alleys, redolent of stewing onions and sharp saffron, seemed like passages to the past. But the Jewish quarter in this ancient city was dying. It was time to end 2,700 years of Jewish history here in the heart of the Arab world and move on to new lives.
January 18, 1994 |
DAMASCUS, Syria--For years, Faraj Mousa Mamroud has been a fixture at the Ibn Maimoun School in the heart of the Jewish quarter of old Damascus. He is like the chairs he repairs, the doors he re-hinges and the floors he sweeps each day. At 46, Mamroud the janitor is part of the very fabric of the only Jewish school left in Syria--indeed, of the dwindling community it serves. But last week, Mamroud's life changed forever.
July 19, 1985 |
Israeli Radio said today that the Soviet Union offered to renew diplomatic ties with Israel and allow unrestricted Jewish emigration in exchange for Israel's withdrawal from Syria's Golan Heights and an end to anti-Soviet propaganda. The radio said Yuli Voronitsov, the Soviet ambassador to France, told Israel's ambassador in Paris, Ovadia Sofer, this week that Moscow is ready to make a major change in its relations with Israel if the conditions are met.