A Jew - just for the Bible quiz?

Ethiopian contestant in annual quiz forced to deposit financial guarantee to ensure he won't remain in Israel after the competition.

Benny Tocker,

Santayehu with Minister Ayelet Shaked
Santayehu with Minister Ayelet Shaked
Spokesperson for the Struggle to bring Jews of Ethiopia to Israel

Sintayehu Shaparou, 18, is the only representative from Ethiopia to compete in this year’s Bible quiz that takes place every Independence Day.

His father and brother immigrated to Israel 17 years ago and, since then, Sintayehu has been waiting to be reunited with them. Minister Ayelet Shaked, with whom he met, promised that she would address the issue of bringing the 8,000 remaining Jews in Ethiopia to Israel.

It should be noted that for the purpose of his participation in the quiz, Shaparou was forced to deposit a financial guarantee to ensure that he would not exploit the situation and remain in Israel after the quiz.

Naama Priner, who is accompanying Shaparou in Israel during the preparations for the quiz, decried in an interview with Arutz Sheva the blatant injustice of the case. "This is an 18-year-old boy living with his mother in Addis Ababa, and his father and seven other siblings are living here in Israel - a family which was torn apart. They live as a Jewish community in every way [in Ethiopia], so why can [Sintayehu] not stay in Israel?" Priner wondered.

Prinner talked about Shaparou’s preparations for the quiz. "Last summer I volunteered to teach Hebrew and Judaism in Ethiopia, and I noticed that the Bible is very important to them. Sintayehu teaches Bible in the afternoon and leads a study group for girls which deals with women in the Bible. We managed to arrange for him to come to Israel for tests ahead of the quiz and I am happy about that. "

But the joy is mixed with sadness. "Santayehu is a Jew in every way and it's sad that right after the quiz he'll have to go back to Addis Ababa," Priner concludes.



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