Muslim caretaker takes over Alexandria community

Inside the Nebi Daniel synagogue in Alexandria

The Jewish community in Alexandria no longer runs its own affairs, a Jewish visitor discovered on a visit to Egypt in March.

Point of No Return has learnt that the Muslim former doorman of the Nebi Daniel synagogue has taken over the leadership of the community from Yousef Gaon. Abdel Nabi collects the community’s rents, has a new car and is living well.

A visitor from England went to the Nebi Daniel synagogue in order to ask for the death certificate of a relative. Abdel Nabi intruded into the visitor’s conversation with Gaon and asked to see proof of his relationship with his relative.

The visitor then showed him his family’s successoral document.

– Ah ! Abdel Nabi said without even reading the document, this is a copy, I need the original.

Gaon later offered this explanation: “Ah!” the erstwhile leader said, “I am nothing now in this office. Abdel Nabi is the government’s eyes and ears. He directs everything and I can’t say anything. I have resigned but the powers that be don’t accept my resignation.I’m sorry, I cannot help you.”

Yousef Gaon, a Jewish convert to Islam, had himself caused controversy when he became head of the community. The Nebi Daniel synagogue is the flagship of the Jewish community of Egypt. The affairs of the Jewish community in Cairo are managed by Mrs Carmen Weinstein, who is in her eighties.
The Alexandria community: 20 women and three men
Crossposted at Elder of Ziyon


  • There is this trend in all Arab countries to 'nationalise' Jewish treasures. You can see it in Iraq with the tug-of-war over the Jewish books being restored in the US, which the Iraqis want returned. The lady who runs community affairs in Baghdad won't last for ever and the same situation will prevail there as in Egypt.
    I suppose one can try bringing international pressure to prevent this happenening, but UNESCO has already been politicised beyond redemption. We need to set up an alternative cultural watchdog, n'est-ce pas?

  • I wonder who Carmen Weinstein is more afraid of: the Muslim thieves or the Egyptians Jews who years ago tried to tell her that Jewish communal assets and records would be safer OUT of Egypt. But she didn't listen. She made that decision all by herself.

    This is a trend we're seeing that has started in Algeria where the government appointed a Jewish community President (when there are no Jews left). We'll see that pattern spread elsewhere. So this is not an Egyptian Jewish problem only and people should think twice before they make a single minded and uninformed decision as to what course to take and play their Carmen Weinstein.

    The Arabs can't wait for Israel to file a complaint with Unesco. We can just guess what the answer will be.

    The only solution is in my view to tightly coordinate a team that will oversee the spreading of information – independently of politics so as to reach as many people as possible.

    I am ready to help but it must be coordinated. We can do it by countries/languages, by medium (tweet, mailing lists, websites) and major printed and electronic media.

  • Levana; que veux-tu que moi avec 2 vertèbres et le sacrum cassé puisse faire d'autre?
    On peut aussi leur envoyer les plaies!

  • Dear Anonymous, who chooses to sit down and cry: We cried "by the rivers of Babylon" and it took us 2000 years of sitting down and crying, until we returned back to ZION.
    Not anymore. 
    In my humble opinion, the third way is the one to choose, as we are going to do tomorrow at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Jerusalem, where the decision will be taken to bring to the United Nations the official Israeli demand to save the Cultural Heritage and return back the Jewish assets – public and private – from Egypt and from all the other Arab countries.
    With G-d's help.
    Levana – President of the Association of Jews from Egypt in Israel

  • Carmen Weinstein is afraid for her life; she just has to say AMEN to everything dictated by Jew haters!

  • Dear all,
    Our last Bastion is falling…
    The last Synagogue open for any Jew de passage to pray, is in the hands of the Egyptian Mokhabarat, as well as all the Jewish Community of Alexandria assets.  Not that it was not before, but now it is formal.
    Very sad…
    In Cairo it's even worse. Carmen Weinstein, terrorized by a court sentence of three years in prison, lowered profile long ago.
    It reminds me the dhimmis status…
    All we have now, is one of three alternatives:
    The easiest one is just to sit down and cry, the glorious Egyptian Jewish Community which is not anymore.
    The most stupid one is to wait until the situation change in Egypt. This is not going to happen soon.
    The third one is to call the International Public Opinion, trying to save our last bastion before it is too late…

  • "Yousef Gaon, a Jewish convert to Islam, had himself caused controversy when he became head of the community."

    That's it, then. Any assets there will eventually convert to Islam as well, including the synagogues…

    The same con-job should be expected in Cairo if no one does anything about it.


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