A group of rabbis from America, Europe and Israel sent a letter to Rabbi Yoshiyahu Yosef Pinto, the president of the Hebrew court in Casablanca, to intervene with Moroccan authorities to let “etrog” (a type of orange used by Jews in Sukkot rituals) pass to Jews around the world, given the current pandemic that has halted mobility between countries around the world.
Rabbi Pinto received a letter in which rabbis asked him to intervene in order to receive authorization to transport this essential product for Jewish rituals, known worldwide for its quality, to be examined by rabbis and classified as kashrut, a halal food for Jews. The letter says, “To the friend of all Jews, to the one who opens their eyes and illuminates their path, who loves creatures and brings them closer to their creator, to Rabbi Yoshiyahu Pinto, the great Moroccan rabbi who influences Jews around the world. You, who have such a special place in the King’s heart, we ask you to intervene with His Majesty, his ministers and advisers, in order to give permission to etrog traders and halal food examiners to enter and leave the country, to harvest this fruit and export it to several countries”.
Through intensive efforts, several measures have been facilitated to take this step and export etrog to Jews around the world, including the United States, Israel and Europe. The Moroccan rabbi has a lot of influence and respect on Jewish sects who passionately follow his lessons with great interest.
In the same context, and in view of the respect Rabbi Pinto enjoys among Jews around the world, and also because of his efforts to explain Judaism and Torah through his various schools around the world, members of the Torah Council in Israel and the United States recommended that he should join the Council, which is considered by the United Nations and successive U.S. governments as one of the most influential Hebrew institutions.
Since the founding of this Council, it has included only Jews of Ashkenazi origin. Rabbi Pinto was the first non-Ashkenazi rabbi to join this institution because of his influence on thousands of Jews around the world.