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Building bridges between Assyrians in Israel and Diaspora

Sydney - 9 December 2019

With a special invitation from Dr. Yaqoub Moaz, Chairperson, of the Committee for the Revival of the Aramaic Language in Israel, to attend a conference hosted by the Committee for the revival of the Aramaic Language and the Tikkun Movement highlighting the survival of the ancient language, and to build bridges between Assyrians in Israel and Diaspora, a delegation from the Assyrian Universal Alliance-Australian Chapter represented by: Mr Hermiz Shahen, Deputy Secretary General of the Assyrian Universal Alliance (AUA) , Mr David David, President of the Assyrian Australian National Federation (AANF) and Mrs. Suzy David , legal advisor for AUA and AANF and former Deputy Secretary General of AUA , visited the city of Jerusalem in Israel.

Also part of the Assyrian delegation were Mr. Remon Sawsan Lazar from Sydney, Mr. Dinkha Eliya from Sweden and Ms. Juliana Taimoorazy from the United States of America.

Dr. Yaacov Maoz was born to a family that immigrated to Israel from Assyria and is a native speaker of Aramaic. He received his academic training principally at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Dr Maoz has established a public council of intellectuals and a committee of lay leaders for the revival of the Aramaic language. He maintains contact with the Assyrian diaspora leadership seeking awareness throughout the Israeli public about the suffering of the Assyrian nation, its cultural richness, and the opportunity for strategic cooperation with the Assyrian nation. The conference was attended by more 120 people including many intellectuals, Mr Miki Levy, member of the Knesset and retired commissioner, Dr Nicholas Aljeloo and Mr Amir Halul, a representative of the Christian Aramaic community in Israel, who read several verses of Psalms in their Aramaic translation.

The Assyrian delegates had the opportunity to meet with high profile individuals in Israel including Mr Michel Oren, Former Israeli ambassador to US , Prof. Hezi Mutsafi, Head of sematic languages division, Tel Aviv University and Prof Yossi Halevi.

The Assyrian delegates were overwhelmed with the reception and passion shown by the Jewish Assyrians. They were invited by many families who shared their customs, traditions, songs and love for the Assyrian heritage.

The Assyrian delegates would like to thank Dr Yaacov Moaz for his selfless devotion to revive the Aramaic language and to build bridges between Israel and Assyria and calls on all the Assyrians in the Diaspora to support what Dr Moaz has initiated, encouraging them to join future conferences to create the framework for international cooperation between Assyrians in Israel and the Diaspora.


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