Trump Admin. Bypasses Travel Restrictions so Jews could get Citrons for Sukkot

Mark, on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the yield of your land,

Leviticus

23:

39

(the israel bible)

October 8, 2020

2 min read

Jewish community leaders praised the White House for its international efforts to assist American Jews who are observing the Sukkot holiday (Feast of Tabernacles) for helping them obtain the four species as required in the Bible reports Fox News.

But because of covid travel restrictions, several rabbis were worried that they could not travel to Italy where they would need purchase the citron and distribute them among the Jewish communities of America. The citron is one of four species the Jewish people are commanded to use as part of the holiday’s special prayer on each day of the festival (excluding the Sabbath).

Mark, on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the yield of your land, (Leviticus 23:39)

The citron, which is generally imported from Italy, must be harvested under strict rabbinic observation to be eligible for use during the holiday.

Trump’s Middle East advisor Avi Berkowitz (screenshot)

The Jewish leaders contacted President Trump’s advisor for International negotiations Avi Berkowitz, for help with the crisis. He then contacted the U.S. embassies in both Italy and Israel, who confirmed that if action isn’t taken immediately, over 100,000 orthodox Jews wouldn’t be able to fulfill their religious obligation.

“We are extremely grateful to the Trump administration for immediately responding to our request for assistance after we learned that Etrog (citron) importers would not be able to enter Italy due to reciprocal COVID Travel restrictions,” Rabbi David Niederman, president of United Jewish Organizations of Williamsburg and North Brooklyn, told Fox News in a statement.

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