Essaouira synagogue a sorry – and stinking – sight


Last week Hicham Bougrine was shocked when he visited the Rabbi Haim Pinto synagogue in Essaouira ( formerly Mogador), Morocco.

Once you are through the blue door, the synagogue itself looks cared for – neat and whitewashed with a tiled floor. But the synagogue’s exterior is a different story. Its walls desperately need restoring and repainting. The building stands next to a derelict site and sewage is flowing freely past. The smell, says Hicham, is indescribable !

So appalled was Hicham that Morocco has so neglected its Jewish heritage that he decided to start a petition deploring Essaouira’s failure to clean up the site here. It’s in French but a signature is a signature in any language.

See more pictures here.

More about Jewish sites in Essaouira here (with thanks: Kalserud)


  • Presently in Essaouira. was hoping to go to the synagogue here. Have just been informed by the owner of my riad that there is nothing to see and that the whole mellah (jewish section) is completey run down and is now just a drug den and prostitution area very dangerous. That you cant go in synagogue, because it no longer exists…can this be true?

  • Bonne idée pour une française ( deriere ) et ce marocain bien connu par son comportement d'escroc ( je possede l'epreuve ), pour sauver pour sauver leur petit projet non loin d'Essaouira ( idaoguerd ). Vie obligek mais les juifs sont la cible la plus parfaite!!!! C'est meme dire que la française n'ayant la chance de grimper dans son propre pays à choisi de manipuler sette fois-ci et instrumentaliser à la fois notre homme et ses idées sur le sionsime musulman fondametaliste confisquées à un autre ecrivain . Pourront-ils, leurs astuces aboutir à relancer et emmener au meilleur leur petit projet?


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