Around 7000 Jewish pilgrims are expected to travel to the island of Djerba for the annual pilgrimage at the Ghriba synagogue taking place from Wednesday, May 22, through Thursday, May 23. A heightened security presence has been reported around the religious site, located in the Erriadh touristic area, and more largely throughout the island amid a persistent terrorist threat in the country. Police forces are reportedly imposing strict inspection procedures at the entrance to the island and around the synagogue. A heightened security presence is likely to remain in place until the end of the pilgrimage.
El Ghriba synagogue is considered one of Tunisia's main symbol of Judaism and is the oldest synagogue in Africa. In 2002, the synagogue was the target of a deadly terrorist attack carried out by Al-Qaeda affiliated groups, killing 21 people including 14 German tourists.The annual pilgrimage is taking place during the month of Ramadan this year, and amid a persistent terrorist threat in the country.
Individuals in Tunisia, particularly in Djerba, are advised to adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities, to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious objects or behavior to the authorities.
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