Saturday, 27 June 2009

The Ibrahimi Mosque


  • Muslims call it the Ibrahimi Mosque, Jews call it the Cave of Machpelah. It is the 2nd most holy site for Jews (after the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem and the 4th most holy for Moslems, after Mecca, Medina and the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. The cave beneath is believed to house the tombs of Abraham, his wife Sarah, their son, Isaac, and his wife Rebecca, their son Jacob and his wife Leah.
  • In 1994, on February 25th, during Ramadan Friday prayers, Dr Baruch Goldstein, a New York born Jew and a medical doctor in the IDF, who lived in Qiryat Arba, entered the mosque disguised in army uniform and began shooting at the worshippers. He killed 29 people and injured about 300. He was beaten to death by the survivors.
  • Up until then, the Tomb of the Patriarch had been a Mosque, and the Jews had had some access to visit on religious holidays. After the Goldstein massacre, the building was divided in two sections – the smaller one for the Mosque, the larger part for a Synagogue. The Isaac Hall is now the Ibrahimi Mosque, while the Abraham Hall and Jacob Hall serve as a Jewish synagogue

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