• By The Financial District


Top Austrian politicians pledged support to the Jewish community in the city of Graz after its leader was attacked on Saturday and its synagogue was damaged in two incidents this week, Albert Otti wrote for Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) on Sunday, August 23, 2020.

The president of the Jewish community, Elie Rosen, saw a man who was carrying a rock and a piece of wood outside the synagogue, he told Austrian press agency APA. When he approached the suspect, the man swung the club at Rosen, who was unhurt as he managed to get back into his car. The silent suspect hit the car with considerable force, Rosen said. 

On Friday night, several windows of the Graz synagogue had been damaged. On Tuesday night, pro-Palestinian slogans were sprayed on the building and on the nearby Jewish community center in Austria's second-biggest city. 

"We will do everything to bring the perpetrator to justice quickly and to ensure the security of the Jewish community in Austria," Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said in a statement on Twitter, expressing his shock about the incidents. Interior Minister Karl Nehammer ordered increased police surveillance of all Jewish institutions in the country in reaction to the incidents. "I stand in solidarity with all Jews in Austria," President Alexander Van der Bellen tweeted. "Hatred of Jews and Anti-Semitism have no place in our society."

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