(JTA) — A pro-Palestinian demonstration in the Moroccan city of Casablanca featured men dressed as haredi Orthodox Jews who were being led at gunpoint by masked men wearing kaffiyehs.
The demonstration was held Sunday with permission from local police, according to a report that appeared Sunday on the news website alyaexpress-news.com. It also featured a video of the event, which drew many thousands of participants.
In the video, two men wearing kaffiyehs, or Arab headdresses, are seen toting what appear to be toy rifles behind two bearded men wearing black robes and top hats during a march that also featured Palestinian flags, including a very large one carried by dozens of people, and a model of the Al-Aqsa mosque located on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
Expressions of anti-Semitism are relatively rare in Morocco, whose king and government have invested millions of dollars in recent years in restoring Jewish heritage sites. In February, the restoration project was honored at an event in Paris attended by French Prime Minister Manuel Valls.
Some 250,000 Moroccan Jews left Morocco in the 19 years that followed Israel’s establishment in 1948. A few dozen Jews were killed in at least three pogroms that occurred between 1938 and 1954, according to Shmuel Trigano, a lecturer of political sociology at Paris X University Nanterre. Several thousand Jews remain in the kingdom.