WASHINGTON (JTA) — A Jewish congressman wrote Pakistan’s ambassador asking for assurances that no harm would come to Karachi’s Jewish cemetery.
Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) in his letter sent this week referred to a December report in The Guardian that described efforts by some groups to take over the land, encompassing some 300 graves.
“It is my hope that the Jewish graves within the cemetery are not disturbed and that the Islamic Republic of Pakistan recognizes the importance of honoring the deceased regardless of religion or ethnicity,” Zeldin wrote to Jalil Abbas Jilani, the Pakistani envoy to Washington.
Karachi’s Jewish community disappeared in the wake of anti-Jewish sentiment following the 1947 partition of the British colonies in the subcontinent into India and Pakistan, and Israel’s establishment in 1948. The community had peaked at about 1,000 at the turn of the 20th century.