Turkish Jews commemorate 527th anniversary of exodus from Spain
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Turkish Jews commemorate 527th anniversary of exodus from Spain

Deputy leader of community said the Ottomans gave Jews the right to life after expulsion from Spain in 1492.

Jenni Frazer is a freelance journalist

Chanukah event in Istanbul (Photo Credit: Izzet Keribar)
Chanukah event in Istanbul (Photo Credit: Izzet Keribar)

Turkish Jews have observed the 527th anniversary of their exodus from Spain, with leading figures of the community recalling the contribution of the Ottoman Empire, which gave them shelter and security.

Moris Levi, deputy leader of Turkey’s Jewish community, said that the Ottoman Empire had given his community the right to life, after they were expelled from Spain in 1492.

Mr Levi said that the Jewish community had brought Andalusian traditions, culture, Western perspective and economic values, while taking shelter in the region. Jews also brought with them a significant machine – the printing press.

“If the printing press had come to the Ottoman Empire by the 15th century, when it was invented, the Renaissance, would have happened in Turkey,” Mr Levi said.

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