‘Act of hatred’ – Arson at ancient Tunisian synagogue

Arson comes less than a year after antisemitic terror attack at Jewish pilgrimage site killed five, additional synagogue torched.

By World Israel News Staff

Unknown assailants attempted to torch a historical synagogue in Sfax, Tunisia, on Sunday, in an apparent antisemitic arson attack.

The fire itself was contained to the courtyard of the Edmond Azria Synagogue, with no injuries reported.

According to local news outlet, a dozen palm trees outside of the building were burned and the synagogue’s windows were damaged.

“This incident does not define the legacy of the Synagogue,” wrote Isaac Choua, a board member of the Sephardic Jewish Brotherhood of America, wrote on X.

“With no Jewish community currently in Sfax, this synagogue serves as a vital link to a rich Jewish past—a beautiful echo of the Great Synagogue of Tunis, reflecting a spirit of beauty, strength, and unity that transcends its physical bounds.”

Choua added that we should “not know Edmond Azria Synagogue for this act of hatred but as a testament to the enduring legacy of Jewish life.”

The attack comes after another synagogue was torched in October 2023, shortly after the Hamas massacres which triggered the current conflict.

Hundreds of pro-Palestinian rioters descended upon the Al Hammah synagogue in central Tunisia, torching the building, then putting up Palestinian flags in the ruins.

In May 2023, five people were murdered in an antisemitic terror attack. a gunman targeted Jewish pilgrims visiting a synagogue on the nearby Tunisian island of Djerba.

“In Djerba, the three religions [Jews, Muslims and Christians] used to coexist in peace, but because of the latest conflict things have changed and the danger for the Jewish population is tangible,” David Gerbi, a Jewish physician of Tunisian origin, told the Times of Israel.

“Locals tell me that it is not easy to change your life and emigrate to Israel, where the cost of living is very high, where there is war, and elderly people will struggle to adapt to a new reality. But perhaps this is, in the end, the best choice,” he added.