First Hanukkah candle lit near Great Wall of China

Monday, December 26, 2005 |    

For the first time ever, the government of China has permitted the lighting of a Hanukkah candle on the Great Wall of China. Judaism is not recognized as an official religion in the communist nation. But on the first night of Hanukkah, about 200 Israelis and members of Beijing’s Jewish community gathered to light the first candle of Hanukkah against the backdrop of the wall. The Israeli Ambassador to China, Dr. Yehoyada Haim, said, “This is a historical moment when two great and ancient civilizations come together.” The vice president of the China Great Wall Society, which helped coordinate the event, lit the shamash, the middle candle that is used to light the other eight candles.

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