French Jews attacked in two incidents

The security service of the French Jewish community reports a 45% increase in anti-Semitic incidents in France in the past year.

February 7, 2013 07:07
1 minute read.
French special police in Toulouse [file photo]

French special intervention police in Toulouse 370. (photo credit: Reuters)


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Two young Jews were attacked in France this week, one in Marseille and one in Toulouse, where almost a year ago an Islamist terrorist killed three soldiers and four Jews before police shot him dead.

The most traumatic incident occurred Wednesday at the entrance to the Ohr Torah school in Toulouse, the same place where Islamist terrorist Mohamed Merah opened fire on March 19, 2012, on two Jewish pupils, their father and the headmaster’s daughter.

The school changed its name after the tragic events from Otzar Hatorah to Ohr Torah.

In the recent incident, a middle school pupil was leaving the school to go home, wearing a kippa, when a woman suddenly brandished a knife at him. He ran back into the building, where guards called security services.

They arrived immediately and arrested the woman, known as a mentally ill neighbor who had spent time in a psychiatric hospital. She didn’t say a word and didn’t try to explain herself, according to police and Jewish sources.

The woman was put under psychiatric watch.

The second attack took place outside Marseille’s main railway station, Gare Saint- Charles, at 3:30 p.m. on Monday.

A 20-year-old Jewish man, wearing a gold Magen David pendant, was leaving the station, which is also a large shopping mall, when two young men on a scooter approached him, tore off the chain from his neck and drove away.

A group of young men standing nearby came over and insulted the victim, using anti-Semitic language, hit him, and stole his MP3 player and 100 euros, according to the Metro newspaper.

The police opened an investigation, treating the case as an anti-Semitic attack.

Eugene Caselli, the president of the Urban Community of Marseille Provence Métropole, which has a high percentage of residents of North African origin, expressing his “profound indignation and rage at this unacceptable act of racist violence.”

There has been a 45 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents in France since the Merah attack, as recorded by SPCJ, the security service of the French Jewish community.

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