Belfast burial ground re­pairs are cel­e­brated

The Jewish Chronicle - - NEWS - BY JC RE­PORTER

THE RECONSECRATION of a Jewish ceme­tery which was de­filed by thugs at­tracted more than 150 peo­ple in Belfast.

Rabbi David Singer led the ser­vice on Sun­day. It fol­lowed the at­tack last Au­gust when a gang of youths smashed 13 head­stones and at­tempted to dig up graves at the ceme­tery. The po­lice de­scribed the in­ci­dent as a “shock­ing hate crime”.

The Jewish sec­tion of the burial ground dates back to the 1870s and had not been used for more than 50 years.

Around 290 Jews are buried there, in­clud­ing the com­mu­nity’s founder, Daniel Joseph Jaffe.

More than half the graves at the

Brian Kingston, Rabbi Singer and Ar­lene Foster Vic­to­rian site are for chil­dren un­der the age of 13.

Ar­lene Foster, the DUP leader who was First Min­is­ter un­til the As­sem­bly’s dis­so­lu­tion last month, at­tended, as did two of her party MPs, Nigel Dodds and Jim Shan­non, and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of Sinn Fein and the Ul­ster Union­ist party.

Rabbi Singer told a Belfast tele­vi­sion chan­nel: “The ser­vice both hon­ours those buried at the ceme­tery and is a thank you to those who have shown tremen­dous ded­i­ca­tion to put the ceme­tery right again”.

Brian Kingston, Belfast’s Lord Mayor, re­ferred to the con­tri­bu­tion of the Jewish com­mu­nity to the city’s cul­tural, in­tel­lec­tual and com­mer­cial life. Wil­liam Humphrey of the DUP said: “We cher­ish our Jewish com­mu­nity and will not al­low it to stand alone in the face of ha­rass­ment and in­tim­i­da­tion.

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