abir yaakov grave Abuhatzeira egypt 311.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Egypt has canceled the annual pilgrimage from Israel to the tomb of the
Rabbi Yaakov Abuhatzeira in the Nile Delta because of the country's
current instability, the Egyptian daily Al-Ahram reported on its website Wednesday.
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to the report, local authorities in the governorate where the shrine is
located advised the military authorities to cancel the pilgrimage,
scheduled for later this week to mark the anniversary of his the rabbi's
Abuhatzeira, also known as the Abir Yaakov, was a 19th century rabbi and
mystic who lived in Morocco, and died near Alexandria on a trip to the Land of
Israel toward the end of the 19th century. He is buried some 150
kilometers north of Cairo.
Abuhatzeira was the grandfather of the Baba Sali, the noted kabalist who died in 1984 and is buried in Netivot.
Pilgrimages from Israel to the site in Egypt began after the 1979–peace
treaty with Israel, but in recent years has been a source of
Following the outbreak of the second intifada in September 2000, the
ceremony was banned by Egyptian courts in 2001 and 2004. Again in 2008,
various Egyptian parliamentarians and activists lobbied the government
to prevent the pilgrimages, saying the visitors behaved in a
In 2009, just after Operation Cast Lead, the Egyptian authorities again barred the pilgrimage altogether.
The following year, after the pilgrimage was renewed, the Egyptian
authorities arrested 25 Muslim extremists suspected of planning to
attack Israelis attending the event. The plans were foiled by Egyptian
security officials. That year the Egyptians limited the visas for those
going to the grave to some 500, considerably less than the thousands
granted in previous years.
And last year, signs reading "Death to the Jews" greeted the 550
Israelis who made the trek. The pilgrimage was accompanied by a campaign
by opposition parties against allowing "Zionists" into the country.