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Sir Sasson Eskell

Hakham Heskel Shlomo Dawid was a student of Hakham Abdalla Somekh. In 1873 he travelled to India to become the Rabbi and Shohet of the thriving Baghdadi Jewish Community there. In 1885 he returned to Baghdad a wealthy man. In 1906 he built Slat Hakham Heskel which was one of the prominent synagogues in Baghdad.

Sasson Eskell born in Baghdad 17 March 1860 and studied at the Alliance School. He left for Istanbul in 1877 in the company of Menahem Saleh Daniel who had been elected a deputy of Baghdad in the Ottoman Parliament during the reign of Sultan Abdul Hamid II. After studying in Istanbul he proceeded to Vienna where he was an outstanding pupil. He returned to Istanbul where he obtained a law degree. He returned to Baghdad in 1885 where he was appointed dragoman for the consular services.

On the announcement of the new Constitution in 1908, he was elected deputy for Baghdad in the first Turkish Parliament, a position he occupied until the end of World War I when Iraq was detached from the Ottoman Empire. He returned to Baghdad in 1920 and was appointed Finance Minister in the first Iraq Government. In 1921 he attended the Cairo Conference under the chairmanship of Winston Churchill at which Emir Feisal was chosen for the throne of Iraq. He occupied the position of Minister of Finance during five consecutive governments until 1925. Thereafter he was Member of Parliament until his death in Paris in 1932 where he was buried at the Père Lachaise Cemetery.

The above picture was taken in Baghdad c. 1927 showing left to right, seated: Jack Eskell; Sir Sassoon Eskell; Henry Eskell Standing: David Shaoul Eskell; Frederick Daniel

1927 - Sir Sasson Eskell and his brother Shaoul (standing), with Albert Shaoul Eskell (left) and friend



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