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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Yemen: Jewish community leader stabbed to death

Man attacked at Sanaa market by Muslim who accused him of witchcraft

A Jewish community leader in Yemen was stabbed to death at a Sanaa market on Tuesday by a Muslim assailant who accused him of witchcraft.

Harun Yusuf Zindani, 50, was attacked at Saawan market near the US embassy in northeast Sanaa, according to his son, Yehya. The victim, who was stabbed in the neck and stomach, was taken to the hospital and later died of his wounds.

Yehya said the attacker was a “well-known person who says my father has ruined him and cast a spell on him."

The Jewish community in Yemen numbered some 60,000 in 1948, but had shrunk significantly in the years following the establishment of the State of Israel.

The community continued to dwindle in subsequent decades and by the early 1990s it numbered only around 1,000 people. The elimination of a longstanding travel ban in 1993 sparked a fresh exodus.

Today, barely 300 Jews remain in the Asian country.

Zindani was originally from the northern province of Saada, where Zaidi Shiite rebels fought a bloody war against former strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh's regime.

Since 2007, authorities have moved members of the Jewish community from Saada to a safer neighborhood in the capital near the US embassy.


  1. Oh my, how could some people take the guts to do this to innocent people. Such a sad news...