Israeli ambassador: Swedish court 'excusing and legitimizing' antisemitism

The criminal, who was supposed to be returned to the Palestinian Authority, had firebombed a synagogue in the Swedish city of Gothenburg in 2017.

Police is seen at the site of an attack near a synagogue in Gothenburg, Sweden December 9, 2017 (photo credit: TT NEWS AGENCY/ADAM IHSE/VIA REUTERS)
Police is seen at the site of an attack near a synagogue in Gothenburg, Sweden December 9, 2017
(photo credit: TT NEWS AGENCY/ADAM IHSE/VIA REUTERS)
The ambassador of Israel in Sweden released a message on Facebook Thursday criticizing the Swedish Court of Appeals for "excusing" and "legitimizing" antisemitism following their overturning the deportation order of a Palestinian to the Palestinian Authority.
The criminal, who was supposed to be returned to the Palestinian Authority, had firebombed a synagogue in the Swedish city of Gothenburg in 2017. The Court overturned the decision because it said that the State of Israel posed a threat to the man's safety.
The attacker was sentenced to two years in prison in Sweden followed by immediate deportation. However, once the time for deportation had arrived, the court mandated that it "cannot safeguard the man's fundamental rights if he is deported to Palestine," according to a statement by the judge according to a report by the broadcaster SVT.
The assault, which occurred during a celebration for teens of the local Jewish community in the synagogue, was carried out by over a dozen men who hurled firebombs.Three of the assailants were convicted for the crime.
"Israel is a democratic country based on Rule of Law," wrote Ilan Ben-Dov, the Israeli Ambassador in Sweden on his Facebook page Thursday. "We are thus deeply concerned with the Court's highly prejudicial and politicized verdict."

The court "excuses and therefore legitimizes the actions of a violent Anti-Semite as acceptable political criticism by stating that his hostility is not towards Jews in general but due to his vengeful attitude towards Israel," Ben-Dov concluded.
Antisemitism has been an increasing problem in Sweden, with leaders of the Swedish Jewish community calling for the banning of the Neo-Nazi Nordic Resistance Movement after the group's demonstrations in recent months.

JTA and Jeremy Sharon contributed to this report.