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UAE hosts largest Passover seders in Arab world

April 16, 2022

'The warm welcome our community received... is a true testament to coexistence and tolerance'

Over a thousand people celebrated the Jewish holiday of Passover in the United Arab Emirates earlier this week in the largest seders ever held in the Arab world.

Passover, also called Pesach, celebrates the exodus of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, and the seder is the ritual feast that marks the beginning of the holiday.

Held in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the seders were led by UAE Chief Rabbi Levi Duchman and were conducted in several languages – English, Hebrew, French, and Russian – according to The Jerusalem Post (The Post).

Since Rabbi Duchman moved to the UAE in 2014, the Jewish community there built new synagogues, kosher restaurants, Jewish schools, and business networks.

Following the signing of the Abraham Accords, which saw Israel and the UAE normalize ties in 2020, Duchman received thousands of requests for information regarding Jewish life in the Gulf Arab country.

"Our community continues to grow and prosper here in the UAE, coupled with the renewed flow of Israelis and Jews from all over the world to Dubai and Abu Dhabi,” the rabbi said, The Post reported.

Duchman was joyful about how far relations between the UAE and the Jewish community have come.

"The warm welcome our community received from the local leadership is a true testament to coexistence and tolerance. How striking it is to be able to celebrate Passover, the Festival of Freedom, here in the Emirates together."

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