ACCJ statement on Paris synagogue attack


On Sunday July 13, clashes erupted in Paris as thousands of people protested against Israel’s Operation Protective Edge and in support of Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
Rioters surrounded the Don Yitzchak Abarbanel Synagogue and threw rocks into the house of worship. Media reports said that hundreds of Jews were trapped inside the synagogue and police units were sent to rescue them.
The Australian Council of Christians and Jews (ACCJ) deplores and are outraged by this spasm of anti-Semitic violence in the capital of France, birthplace of the Enlightenment.
In response to the riots, France’s Progressive Jewish community is lending its support to the Jewish Federation of France’s call on the government to ban pro-Hamas demonstrations.
For while criticism of Israel’s policies may be legitimate, attacks against Jews and Jewish institutions are criminal.
ACCJ hopes that the French government responds swiftly to ensure that the perpetrators of this crime are brought to justice and that religious institutions and the faithful are not targetted by those seeking to demonstrate their political anger at what happens in the Middle East, especially if it is not related to religion – attacking Jews in their houses of worship is outrageous.
Our hearts go out to the Jewish community of Paris and we call on all people of goodwill to help fight against racism and hatred wherever they confront it.
The World Union of Progressive Judaism (WUPJ) amongst other organisations, has condemned such behaviour and we in ACCJ support their statements in this regard.