Eliyahu Nawi

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Eliyahu Nawi
Eliyahu navi 4.jpg
3rd Mayor of Beersheba
In office
Preceded byZe'ev Zrizi
Succeeded byMoshe Zilberman
Personal details
Born(1920-06-22)22 June 1920
Basra, Iraq
Died16 November 2012(2012-11-16) (aged 92)
Ganey Omer, Israel
Political partyMapai
Eliyahu Nawi, October 2010

Eliyahu Nawi (Hebrew: אליהו נאוי; June 22, 1920 – November 16, 2012) was a judge, lawyer, poet, politician, Bible investigator, and mayor of Beersheba.


Eliyahu Nawi was born in Basra, Iraq. He immigrated to Jerusalem with his family at the age of six.[1] He served in the Israel Defense Forces and attained the rank of major in the intelligence services. In 1947, Nawi moved to Beersheba as a liaison man between the British Mandate authorities and the Arab population.[1] He later became a judge in the Beersheba magistrates' court.[2] In 1983, the Public Council for Falasha Jews elected Nawi as its honorary president.[3]

Political career[edit]

Nawi Square in Beersheba

Prior to the 1963 municipal elections in Beersheba, the leadership of Mapai chose Nawi to head the party's electoral list in Beersheba. Nawi was chosen both for his formal education and his Iraqi descent, important in light of ethnic tensions in the city at the time. During his election campaign, Nawi rejected the notion that he was chosen for his ethnic background, but twelve years later wrote that this had been in fact the reason. In the election, held on August 28, 1963, Nawi won against David Hakham, then deputy mayor and himself a former Mapai member, and Ze'ev Zrizi of Mapam.[2] Nawi continued his tenure until 1986. During most of his tenure, Ze'ev Zrizi served as his deputy.[4]


  1. ^ a b Longest serving mayor of Beersheba dies at 92
  2. ^ a b Meir-Glitzenstein (2009), pp. 267–271
  3. ^ Falashas to get matzo from Israel
  4. ^ Meir-Glitzenstein (2009), pp. 272–273


  • Meir-Glitzenstein, Esther (2009). Tzameret, Tzvi; Halamish, Aviva; Meir-Glitzenstein, Esther (eds.). The Development Towns. Idan Series, Vol. 24 (in Hebrew). Yad Ben Tzvi Publishing. ISBN 978-965-217-298-3.