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by Meer Basri


Naji Elias was born in 1910. His father Sasson Elias was a landowner in Bagubah, a township east of Baghdad on the road to the Iranian border.

He studied in Baghdad and went into business with his late brother Yehuda. With an Arab partner they built the first cinema house in Bagubah.

He continued his commercial enterprise for many years in Baghdad. He became interested in the Jewish communal affairs and was elected a member, and then Vice-Chairman of the Jewish Council. When Meer Basri left Baghdad in October 1974, he became President of the Jewish community and continues to hold this office until he finally left Iraq in 1997. He went to live in Amsterdam with his family, but he visited London often.

He died in Amsterdam on 27th August 2000.



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