Friday , January 15 2021

Westmount synagogue targeted by hate graffiti

A synagogue in Westmount, on the island of Montreal, was the target of a thief who painted swastikas on its doors before being arrested by police on Wednesday.

According to what Shaar Hashomayim rabbi of the congregation, Adam Scheier, explained, the anti-Semitic act was committed around 2 p.m. when a man approached the gates of the synagogue on Coast Road. Saint-Antoine and began to paint his graffiti there.

A security guard present in the building, Alex Kuczma, however, saw the thug at work thanks to surveillance cameras and hurried to arrest him. “Alez then called for help and in no time the police arrived and arrested the man,” Scheier told Facebook, adding that the perpetrator had a can of gasoline with him.


This anti-Semitic act sparked an outcry on the web, drawing even the condemnation of Prime Minister François Legault, who described the gesture as “unacceptable, which must be denounced loudly”, on his Twitter account.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, for his part, deemed the gesture “absolutely odious”.

“I strongly condemn this despicable gesture and stand in solidarity with the congregation @ShaarHashomayim, Rabbi @AdamScheier and Jewish Canadians across the country. We must speak out against anti-Semitic hatred wherever and whenever it occurs, ”he wrote on Twitter.

Some of his ministers, including Marc Garneau and Marc Miller, have made similar comments.

The Jewish community denounced, for its part, an attack that “targets the whole community and all those who adhere to the principles of civility and tolerance,” said Reuben Poupko, co-president of the Advisory Center for Jewish and Israeli Relations ( CIJA) Quebec.

The latter demands that governments and the giants of information technology make more efforts to fight against hate messages conveyed on social networks.

“Following other violent anti-Semitic attacks, this incident reminds us of the dangerous role social media continues to play in spreading hatred and provoking violence. The Jewish community calls on the government and social media to redouble their efforts to monitor and curb this spread of anti-Semitism and bigotry online, ”pleaded Mr. Poupko.

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