Former Yugoslav republic to get first synagogue in centuries
04 January 2013
The government of Montenegro, an independent state formerly part of Yugoslavia, has reportedly allocated a plot of land in the capital Podgorica to the small local Jewish community for the construction of the a synagogue. It would be the first Jewish house of worship to be built in Montenegro for centuries.
Jasa Alfandari, head of the recently established Jewish Community of Montenegro, told JTA: "We have been given a beautiful location in the center of the Podgorica." The site would belong to the Jewish community for 99 years, he said, and was given "as a gift by the government and the city of Podgorica." The building will be erected with funding secured by Vadim Rabinovich, a Ukraine-born philanthropist.
Independent since 2006, Montenegro has a population of about 660,000, including a few dozen Jews. Earlier in 2012, Montenegrin Prime Minister Igot Luksic signed a statement recognizing Judaism as the country's fourth official religion.