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December 29, 2019 11:11 am

Israeli Prime Minister, President Voice ‘Outrage’ Over New York Stabbing Attack on Worshipers at Rabbi’s House

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

First responders work near the home of a rabbi on Forshay Rd. in Monsey, N.Y. Sunday night after a man entered the house and stabbed multiple people who were there for a Hanukkah gathering. Photo: Seth Harrison/The Journal News, Rockland/Westchester Journal News via Imagn Content Services, LLC.

Israeli leaders responded with outrage on Sunday following the brutal antisemitic stabbing attack on a Hasidic rabbi’s home in Monsey, New York on Saturday night.

Five people were wounded in the attack on a Hanukkah celebration, two of them critically. A suspect has been taken into custody.

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin said he was “shocked and outraged by the terrible attack in New York.” He added, “We are praying for the rapid recovery of those injured.”

“The rise of antisemitism is not just a Jewish problem, and certainly not just the State of Israel’s problem,” he asserted. “We must work together to confront this evil, which is raising its head again and is a genuine threat around the world.”

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement, “Israel strongly condemns the recent displays of antisemitism including the vicious attack at the home of a rabbi in Monsey, New York, during Hanukkah. We send our best wishes for recovery to the wounded.”

“We will cooperate however possible with the local authorities in order to assist in defeating this phenomenon,” he added. “We offer our assistance to every country.”

Isaac Herzog, chairman of the Jewish Agency, said, “This is an attempt of cold-blooded murder of Jews, in the heart of a warm and thriving Jewish community that gathered to light Hanukkah candles.”

“This past year, the Jewish holidays have turned from joyous times of light to dark days filled with fear for Jews around the world,” he said. “Law enforcement agencies in the United States are making huge efforts to protect Jewish communities, but a relentless battle must be waged against this horrifying and painful spate of violent antisemitic acts. It’s unacceptable that a Jew wearing a kippah cannot safely walk the streets of New York.”

“It always starts with the Jews, but never ends just with the Jews,” Herzog said.

Benny Gantz, leader of the opposition Blue and White party, tweeted, “I send my wishes for a speedy recovery to the victims of the hate crime in Monsey, New York. We have become witness to a surge in antisemitic violence around the world, and this horrific attack, during a Hanukkah celebration, is further evidence of a global problem that we face.”

“I have no doubt that the American authorities, who took the attacker into custody, will show zero tolerance and will do everything to stop this alarming trend,” he said.

Blue and White number two Yair Lapid also issued a statement, saying, “I send best wishes for recovery to the victims of the stabbing in Monsey. Antisemitism will not defeat us; our spirit will not fall. The community in Monsey will light the last candle of Hanukkah today and pray for good news.”

Avigdor Lieberman, head of the Yisrael Beiteinu party, issued a more controversial statement, saying, “Alongside the deep sorrow and wishes for a speedy recovery to the victims, it is important to know that the essential solution to such phenomena is aliyah to Israel.”

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz stated, “I am shocked and deeply upset by the antisemitic attack in Monsey, New York. I wish all those injured and affected a speedy recovery. This attack on Hanukkah is another reminder of the murderous nature of antisemitism and the need for it to be tackled by everyone.”

The attack is the latest in a string of antisemitic assaults in the US, some deadly.

Earlier this month, three were killed in a shooting attack at a kosher supermarket in Jersey City. The killer had posted antisemitic and anti-police messages online.

In April, a gunman killed a woman and wounded three people during services at Congregation Chabad in Poway, near San Diego, on the last day of Passover.

Six months before that, a gunman killed 11 worshipers at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh in the deadliest antisemitic attack in US history.

The Jewish holiday of Hanukkah commemorates the 2nd century B.C. victory of Judah Maccabee and his followers in a revolt against armies of the Seleucid Empire.

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