Spain invites Sephardic Jews back after 500 years

Spain is inviting back the descendants of the tens of thousands of Sephardic Jews who fled Spain during the Inquisition in the 15th century through a process granting them Spanish citizenship and Spanish passports.

Spain invites Sephardic Jews back after 500 years

World Bulletin/News Desk

Spain is now home to about 40,000 or 50,000 Jews. But prior to the 15th Century Spanish Inquisition, approximately 300,000 Jews lived in Spain.

In November, Spain's justice minister Alberto Ruiz-Gallardon announced a plan to make it easier for descendants of Spain's original Jewish community of Sephardic Jews to acquire a Spanish passport and Spanish citizenship.

Anyone who could prove their Spanish Jewish origins would be given Spanish nationality, he said.

Approximately 6,000 enquiries, one from an unnamed member of US Congress, have been made in the first month, according to the Spanish Federation of Jewish Communities which processes the applications.

Mauricio Toledano, secretary general of the Spanish Federation of Jewish Communities, told media sources that the details of the plan are still being worked out.

About 100,000 Jews fled Spain during the 15th Century. Some migrated to North Africa, but most settled in the then Ottoman Empire. About 90% of Jews in Turkey today are Sephardic Jews.


Last Mod: 06 Mart 2013, 14:40
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