The Jewish Community of Yemen in Decline

Yemeni-Jews-and-MuslimsAccording to the spiritual leader of the once large Jewish community in Sana’a, the capital of Yemen, Rabbi Yahe Yousif Mousa, there is today only 400 Jews left in Yemen, down from about 50,000. Those 400 remaining Jews are divided into two small enclaves, one in Sana’a, where there are about 100 Jews, and the remainder in Reida. The two communities have very little to do with each other.

The Jews there are completely integrated into the general Arab Yemeni society, going to each other’s weddings, visiting at their homes, and going to school together. The Jews in Yemen were forced to leave their homes in Sa’ada by the Houthis in 2004, when all their property was confiscated and they were lucky to flee with their lives and the shirts on their backs.