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June 15, 2018 11:27 am

Berlin Police Investigating Verbal Assault on Man Wearing Kippah as Antisemitic Hate Crime

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A “kippah rally” in Berlin in April expressing solidarity with Germany’s Jewish community. Photo: Reuters / Fabrizio Bensch.

Police in Berlin are treating the latest verbal assault on a man wearing a kippah as an antisemitic hate crime, German media outlets reported on Friday.

The 39-year-old man, who has not been named, was walking on Rudolstädter Street in the Wilmersdorf neighborhood of the German capital on Thursday afternoon. A car containing several Arab men pulled up alongside him, and one of the occupants then subjected the man to a tirade of antisemitic abuse through an open window. The car then drove off.

In March, a Berlin police report revealed that antisemitic crimes in the capital had doubled during the 2013-17 period. Police sources told the newspaper Tagesspiegel that the rise was “connected to the increased number of migrants from the Middle East living in the city.”

The following month, Germans expressed horror after a young Israeli wearing a kippah in Berlin was brutally assaulted in the Prenzlauer Berg district. The attack was captured by the victim on video that subsequently went viral online, inspiring several “kippah rallies” across Germany in solidarity with the Jewish community. The criminal trial of one of the assailants — a 19-year-old Syrian immigrant who whipped the Israeli with a belt — begins on Tuesday.

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Meanwhile, police in France said on Friday that they were investigating whether a violent attack on a 15-year-old Jewish girl in Paris was motivated by antisemitism. The attack — in the Sarcelles district of Paris, where a Jewish community of 15,000 lives among one of the largest concentrations of Muslims in France — took place on June 5.

The girl, a student at the Orthodox Ozar Hatorah school, was set upon by three teenagers as she was arriving at the school to attend a concert. As one of the assailants filmed the attack, the other two began pulled the girl’s hair and punched her.

Despite the presence of a security guard on the premises, the violent frenzy was said to have lasted several minutes before a teacher arrived to pull the girl to safety.

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