Participants in the memorial in Iran
Participants in the memorial in IranCourtesy

The Yusef Abad Synagogue in Tehran held a memorial this week for Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini ahead of the anniversary of his death, on June 3, 1989.

The heads of the local Jewish community gave speeches in his memory and pointed out the religious freedom that the Jews in Iran have.

Dr. Homayoun Sameyah, the representative of the Jewish community in the Iranian parliament, recently took part in an anti-Israeli "Al-Quds Day" march in Iran.

Commenting on Al-Quds Day in a conversation with Iranian media, he said, "Every year there are important things for Al-Quds Day, this day is very important not only for Iranians, but also for all nations that want the end of oppression in the world."

On the demonstrations against the government in Israel, Sameh said, "On the eve of Al-Quds Day this year, we are witnessing the existence of major problems within the Zionist regime. In the way that Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of the occupied Jerusalem regime, is trying to distance as much as possible the public opinion of the people in the occupied territories and even of the world from the internal crisis of this regime, it is necessary that the Islamic Republic of Iran does not allow Netanyahu and the Zionist regime to achieve their goals."

The Jewish community in Iran, numbering about 8,000, lives in the country in the shadow of fear of harassment or accusations of espionage. Its leaders are constantly trying to differentiate between Judaism and Zionism.

While Iranian leaders regularly call for Israel’s destruction, the Jewish community there is on good terms with the authorities.