German Foreign Minister Visits Berlin Synagogue to Show Support Following Antisemitic Attack
JNS.org – German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas paid a special visit to a Chabad synagogue in Berlin over the weekend to show support for the county’s Jewish community, two weeks after the city’s rabbi was attacked.
Wearing a kippah, Maas, who is considered an Israel ally, said, “Antisemitism did not creep in here overnight, but it has become more vocal and aggressive. If Jewish women and men are worried about displaying their Jewishness in public—it is a disgrace to the state.”
He emphasized that “we stand here physically together because of what happened to Rabbi [Yehuda] Teichtel two weeks ago. It is intolerable and unbelievable. I do not want him to stand alone without support.”
German police have opened an investigation after Teichtel reported being spat on and cursed by two Arabic-speaking men late last month.
Gideon Joffe, the chairman of Berlin’s Jewish community, said, “We have a Jewish high school here in Berlin. Every third child studies in this school because they suffered harassment at the non-Jewish public schools. I say this without embellishing things: Here in Berlin, in the year 2019, our high school is full of Jewish refugees.”
In recent months, Germany has reported a 14 percent increase in antisemitic incidents in Berlin since last year, when 1,083 such incidents were reported.