Sunday, March 01, 2015
Consul: 'Spain must grant passports to Turkish Jews'
The Haham Bashi (chief rabbi) attends a memorial service for the victims of a terrorist attack in Istanbul (Reuters)
With thanks Heather
The new Honorary Consul of Israel in Cádiz, Huelva and Extremadura, Pascual Salvador Sánchez-Gijón, has appealed to the Spanish government to speed up the granting of dual citizenship to 15,000 'Sephardic Turks' living a "very difficult situation" arising from the "Islamisation "process initiated by the Government of Tayyip Erdogan.
As reported in Europa Press, Pascual feared that 'mishaps' were in danger of befalling these descendants of Jews expelled from Spain in 1492 if they remained in Turkey.
Although the Spanish government had approved in 2014 the granting of Spanish passports to those who could prove they were descended from Sephardi Jews, Turkish-Jewish families, who still spoke Ladino (ancient Spanish), could wait 'up to five years' for their passports, the consul claimed.
But the Financial Times quotes one Jew as saying that Ladino is dying. Hardly any members of the younger generation speak it. The article claims that some
5, 000 Jews from a community of 17, 000 have applied for Spanish nationality.