A rabbi in Austria was attacked by a woman who reportedly shouted anti-Semitic slogans as she pulled out a knife and kicked him in the leg. Top Austrian officials have condemned the incident.
The attack happened in Vienna on Thursday afternoon. The woman, described as being in her 50s and wearing a grey coat, confronted the rabbi for no apparent reason. She produced a knife from her handbag and kicked the man’s leg, then tore off his kippah and fled, the police said. According to some reports, she shouted “slaughter all Jews” during the incident.
The attack was condemned by top government officials. Chancellor Sebastian Kurz released a statement, saying Austrians “must fight anti-Semitism with all determination and do everything we can to make Jewish life safe here in Austria.” Interior Minister Karl Nehammer said he had ordered increased security for synagogues and pledged to conduct a swift investigation.
Dieser Angriff ist eine Attacke auf das jüdische Leben in Wien. Neben dem bereits angeordneten verstärkten Schutz der Synagogen werden alle Maßnahmen getroffen um diesen offensichtlich antisemitisch motivierten Angriff rasch aufzuklären. 1/2 https://t.co/4buZiyw7Ck
— Karl Nehammer (@karlnehammer) November 26, 2020
Oskar Deutsch, the head of the Jewish Community of Vienna (IKG), called the incident “disturbing,” but assured that the Jewish people would not be intimidated by it.
The rabbi was not physically hurt during the altercation. The identity of the woman has not been established as of Friday.
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