‘Anti-Jewish Criminals’ Sought by Police After Shots Fired at Paris Synagogue
Unidentified gunmen opened fire at the David Ben Ichay Synagogue in Paris’ 19th Arrondissement late Monday night, police confirmed to the French-Jewish JSS News site.
Police said a pellet from an AirSoft pellet gun was fired at a window in the building at about 9:30 PM.
The round went through the closed window of the religious center’s office – the only lit room – but did not hit the synagogue’s Rabbi Lousky or an assistant who were present.
An initial report said the assailants fired a round from a semi-automatic rifle, which officials later discounted.
The Jewish Bureau National de Vigilance Contre L’Antisémitisme (BNVCA) alerted police who opened an investigation into the attack, after finding the bullet.
Police are searching for two suspects seen in the vicinity at about 9:20 PM, according to JSSNews.
The BNVCA called on French authorities to do everything possible to “identify and question the anti-Jewish criminals.”
The BNVCA hopes the ballistics forensics services will be able to conclusively determine whether the shot was fired from the street or from a nearby building.
The BNVCA, in a statement, reiterated that “anti-Semitic acts are increasing in France and that recent attacks by radical Islamists in Joue-les-Tours, Dijon and Nantes are rooted in a misguided Palestinianism and visceral anti-Zionism.”
France has been rocked by three separate attacks by Muslim suspects in the last three days, two of them using vehicles to ram into pedestrians, and the third a stabbing attack on police in Tours.
The BNVCA recommended that all those responsible for synagogues, Jewish schools and other institutions increase their vigilance and caution.
Some 300 French soldiers are being deployed to provide increased security in some areas, in the wake of the series of what local officials are calling unrelated attacks.
On Dec. 1st, the Paris Jewish community was shocked by a brutal rape and home invasion by several Muslim suspects, who perpetrated the assault “because you are Jews,” according to the female victim’s testimony to police.
Roger Cukierman, the veteran president of CRIF, the representative body of French Jews, has issued an extraordinary warning concerning the potential fate of his community.
“Jews will leave in large numbers and France will fall into the hands of either Shari’a Law or the Front National,” Cukierman declared at a rally against anti-Semitism in the suburb of Creteil last Sunday, to loud applause from the assembled crowd.