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Africa Jews

African Jewish communities include:

  • Sephardi Jews and Mizrahi Jews living primarily in the Maghreb of North Africa, including Morocco, Algeria, Libya, and Tunisia, as well as Sudan and Egypt. Some were established early in the diaspora; others after the expulsion from Iberia in the late 15th century.
  • South African Jews, who are mostly Ashkenazi Jews descended from post-Holocaust immigrant Lithuanian Jews.
  • Beta Israel living primarily in the Amhara and Tigray regions of Ethiopia and sparsely in Eritrea.
  • Berber Jews, the majority of whom were assimilated and converted to Islam, especially during the historical persecutions of the Almohadic Caliphate in the Middle Ages. The modern population of Berber Jews in Africa now numbers about 8,000 people in Morocco, with the majority having emigrated to Israel since the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, along with smaller numbers scattered throughout Europe and North America.
  • Historical communities which no longer exist in Africa due to assimilation, such as the Jews of Bilad el-Sudan in West Africa, who existed before the introduction of Islam to the region during the 14th century.
  • Various relatively modern groups throughout Africa, most of whom claim some form of a Judaic or Israelite identity, and/or ancestry. In 2002 Tudor Parfitt proposed that the generation of Jewish and Israelite identities throughout the African continent was an integral part of the European colonial project. However, in 1992 and 2020 the same author provided proof of ancient extinct Jewish communities in both west Africa (in Mauritania) and East Africa (Horn of Africa).