Estonia to open new synagogue in early 2007

November 2, 2006 19:22

The construction of Estonia's first synagogue since World War II is running behind schedule but the Baltic nation's tiny Jewish community hopes it will be opened in February, a spokesman said Thursday. "It is almost finished," the community's spokesman, Rabbi Shmuel Kot, told The Associated Press. Tallinn's last synagogue was built in 1882 but was destroyed in 1944 in air raids as Nazi Germany's troops fled the Soviet Red Army's advance. Some 3,000 Jews live in Estonia, a country of 1.3 million. Most reside in Tallinn. Construction of the ultramodern 200-seat synagogue started in 2005 in downtown Tallinn next to the Estonian Jewish Community center and school. The total cost is estimated at some 24 million kroons (€1.5 million, $US2 million), and financed mainly by donations.

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