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Later, immigration to the country due to Nazi persecution increased their numbers.They established a small but vibrant presence in the predominantly Islamic country, which also has small Christian, Hindu, and Buddhist minorities. However, as most of these peoples live in areas controlled by a hostile, militant Islam, whether they will survive is debatable. These groups, in turn, have discovered their commonality with the more known Jewish communities.Later, controversy over Israel led to hostility against the community; as a result, most either emigrated from Indonesia or converted to Islam or Christianity.It is believed there are only 200 practicing Jews left in the country, and the government doesn’t even officially recognize Judaism as a religion.

It is thus unlikely that the world has heard of the story of the Bukharan Jews, a community that is nearly 2,500 years old.The Jewish community in Indonesia wasn’t always in such a desperate position.When the Dutch East India Company began trading with Indonesia in the 17th century, many Jews settled on the island as merchants.Still, the community tries to preserve their Central Asian heritage despite influence from the surrounding American culture.Their biggest struggle may be with the predominant Ashkenazi, who some believe are prejudiced against them, as the Bukharan Jews’ dress, food, and social customs are alien to Orthodox ways.