For the first time, the United Nations headquarters in New York is hosting a unique exhibition that documents the expulsion of the Jews from Arab countries and Iran.
The Israeli mission to the U.N. led the initiative to launch the display, inaugurating it on Tuesday “after a long struggle,” according to Israel’s Ambassador to the U.N. Gilad Erdan.
The launch coincides with an annual memorial day in Israel marking the “Jewish Nakba.” In 2014, the Israeli parliament chose Nov. 30 as the date memorializing the expulsion of Jews from Arab and Muslim countries, in an effort to push back against the Palestinian narrative entrenched at the U.N.
“I will bless those who bless you,
And I will curse him who curses you;
And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” Genesis 12:3
This year, the commemoration occurs in parallel to the U.N. marking 75 years since the Partition Plan, which called to divide the territory of British Mandatory Palestine into Arab and Jewish states.
“For 75 years now, here in the U.N., a completely false story has been told about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Since the Partition Plan, which the Arabs rejected and the State of Israel accepted, the story of the ‘Palestinian Nakba’ has been told here at the U.N., a story that erases the real Nakba [“catastrophe”] that occurred immediately after the announcement of the Partition Plan: the story of the Nakba of Arab Jewry,” said Erdan.
Erdan stated that, following the decision, many Jews were violently and cruelly expelled, or had to flee, from Arab and Muslim countries, leaving their lives behind.
“This year, after a long struggle, we managed to place an exhibition with photos that document the story of the real Nakba,” Erdan said of the exhibition, which includes historical documentation of Jewish life in the Muslim world.
The Israeli ambassador vowed to “continue to fight for the truth and against the false narrative that the Palestinians and their supporters spread.”
According to estimates, around 850,000 Jews living in Arab and Muslim nations were expelled or fled from them during the 20th century. Most of these left North African counties: 259,000 from Morocco; 140,000 from Algeria and 100,000 from Tunisia.
Others emigrated from Egypt, Libya, Iraq, Yemen, Turkey, Lebanon, Syria and Iran.
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