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Shalom al-Yisrael Synagogue

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The Shalom al-Yisrael Synagogue, (lit. "Peace upon Israel"), dates to the late 6th or early 7th century CE and was discovered in Jericho in 1936.

History

The synagogue, dating from the Byzantine period, was revealed in excavations taken in 1936 by Dr. Baramki of the Antiquities Authority under the British Mandate. It appears to have been in use from the 5th to 8th centuries, though the date of its construction is unknown.

The synagogue contained a large floor mosaic with drawings of the Ark of the Covenant, the Menorah, a Shofar, a Lulav and a Hebrew inscription "Peace upon Israel", after which the synagogue was named.

After the 1967 Six Day War, it came under Israeli control and Jews began visiting the site regularly for prayers. In later years, a yeshiva was developed in the place.

Recent events

After the 1995 Oslo Accords, control of the site was given to the Palestinian Authority. It was agreed that free access to the site would continue and it would be adequately defended. [1]

At the beginning of the Al-Aqsa Intifada the site became a source of conflict. On the night of October 12, 2000, Arabs entered the synagogue and desecrated the building, damaging the mosaic and furniture and burned the whole second floor.[2] The Torah scroll stored at the synagogue was rescued from the fire and resides at the yishuv Mevo'ot Yericho.

In 2005 a group of Israelis were able to visit the synagogue after IDF soldiers restored the site. Currently the IDF allows only monthly visits - on the first of every Jewish month - in order to conduct prayer services.

See also

References

External links

Coordinates: 31°52′27″N 35°26′57″E / 31.87417°N 35.44917°E / 31.87417; 35.44917

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