Iraqi-Israeli Jews plan to visit their 'roots'

Thursday, December 29, 2005 | 
Iraqi-Israeli Jews born in Mosul, Iraq will “return to their roots” this spring in a trip organized by the Mosul Jewry Heritage Center in Haifa. Despite the bombs, the kidnappings, and the violence raging in their homeland, Iraqi-Israelis are rushing to sign up. “I'm going no matter what,” said Nahum Ballush, 72. “I want to go back and see the river, the Jewish quarter.” The first trip is limited to 12 people, but many more have expressed interest, said Gideon Oved, 59. For Iraqi Jews from northern Iraq now living in Israel, the visit to the country they have not seen since they left some 50 years ago is an opportunity not to be missed. More than 120,000 Jews left Iraq during the early 1950s.

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