The Courts of the Israeli Occupation Authorities Preserve the Manuscripts of “The Crowns of Damascus” in the Custody of “Israel”

On August 22, 2020, the court of the Israeli occupation authorities decided to keep the old manuscripts, known as “Damascus Crowns,” in the custody of the National Library in the occupied territories of Palestine, according to what was published by the Israeli newspaper, The Jerusalem Post.

From the writing notes, the writer of this crowns is Mnahim son of the Rabbi Ibrahim Bin Malik in the city of Burgus in present-day Spain, he wrote these manuscripts in 1260.

The story of “Damascus Crowns” goes back to 1993, when a group of the Israeli Mossad, in cooperation with the Syrian-Canadian Rabbi Abraham Hamra, and a Canadian diplomat smuggled archaeological biblical manuscripts, called “Damascus Crowns”, out of Syria. Finally, it will reach the Israeli occupation authorities in Jerusalem. Let it be announced after several years of owning it, on October 5, 2011. After a complex operation of smuggling Syrian antiquities, which the occupation authorities described as one of James Bond’s tasks.

In returning to the story of these manuscripts, we find that they belong to the Syrian Jewish community. It dates back more than 700 years. They are rare artifacts, in addition to their religious importance for followers of the Jewish religion. They are medieval manuscripts, some of which are 1,000 years old. Historians consider that it is possible to identify the developments in the texts of the Torah.

It is worth noting that international law considers this act theft. The UNESCO Convention in 1970 stipulated the prevention of illicit trafficking in cultural property,

As for the use of the term “crown,” it was mentioned in Hebrew by the word Keter. The term came to refer to any entire text of the Hebrew Bible, or a large portion of it, linked as a manuscript (not a scroll) and includes vowel points, punctuation marks, and Masonic notes. Handwritten manuscripts in the Middle Ages were considered very accurate, and are the most reliable documents for copying other texts from. The Jewish community in Damascus owned twelve of these “Keters” or “Crowns” in various synagogues throughout the city. It appears to be the oldest manuscript of the Hebrew Bible in the world.

From the writing notes, the writer of this crowns is Mnahim son of the Rabbi Ibrahim Bin Malik in the city of Burgus in present-day Spain, he wrote these manuscripts in 1260. These manuscripts were transferred to the Khosh Al-Pasha Al-Anabi Synagogue in Damascus, and the historian and orientalist Abraham Herkavi examined the manuscript during his visit to Damascus in 1886.

It is worth noting that international law considers this act theft. The UNESCO Convention in 1970 stipulated the prevention of illicit trafficking in cultural property, and calls for the return of all stolen pieces after 1970 to their mother countries, meaning that Syria (the signatory to the agreement) can demand the return of manuscripts, as these manuscripts are part of the rich and varied Syrian heritage of sects. Multiple religious groups have formed over the years a unique model for coexistence between its members. But the Israeli occupation does not care about these agreements. The Israeli occupation authorities have not only sought to deport Jews from Syria but are also concerned with stealing the Jewish heritage that they possessed, due to a clear political goal that there is no historical Jewish presence outside Israel

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