A Jewish community living in the heart of the Peruvian jungle region has a new rabbi. The Jewish community of Tarapoto got its new Spanish-speaking rabbi last week. The community comprises several hundred people, descendants of Moroccan Jews who migrated to the area in the late 19th century. “Assimilation and intermarriage took a heavy toll on the Moroccan Jews who chose to remain in the area,” said Michael Freund, chairman of Shavei Israel, the organization that dispatched the new rabbi. “Now, however, their children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren have begun to return to their Jewish roots.” Tarapoto is located adjacent to the Andes Mountains, more than 600 kilometers north of Lima, the country’s capital. The community is well-organized, and its members include doctors, lawyers, architects and academics.
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