Two kosher markets in the Paris suburbs of Créteil and Val-de-Marne have been vandalised with swastika graffiti only days before the anniversary of the 2015 kosher market terror attack.
The swastikas were discovered on Wednesday by the owners of the kosher markets and were immediately reported to the police. An investigation into the vandalism has been opened by police and the incident has been condemned by the French Interior Ministry, L’Express reports.
Interior Minister Gerard Collomb expressed outrage at the vandalism and the fact the Jewish community in Paris had been targetted.
2018 begins, a few days before the commemoration of the attacks of # hypercacher with anti-Semitic inscriptions on shops in Créteil and Jewish homes in Paris I hope that those responsible will be apprehended as soon as possible pic.twitter.com/OtCTI8JPMn
— Serge Dahan (@PresidentBBE) January 4, 2018
The French National Office of Vigilance against Antisemitism said they believe the swastikas were drawn to coincide with the 2015 terror attacks in which radical Islamic extremist Amedy Coulibaly took several people hostage and later killed four of them before police stormed the market and shot him.
Adding substance to the group’s theory is that the vandalism was done to the Hypercacher market, which is the same chain in which the 2015 attack occurred.
Anti-Semitic incidents have been on the rise in France in recent years. The escalation of, often violent, attacks led the European Jewish Congress (EJC) to demand the French government to take further action against “societal anti-Semitism”.
“We call on French authorities to firmly root out societal Antisemitism and its passive acceptance,” Dr. Moshe Kantor, president of the EJC, said.
The anti-Semitic atmosphere has also led many Jews in France to flee suburbs in Paris entirely with Rabbi Moshe Lewin, who lives in the suburb of Raincy, speculating that he might be the last Jewish religious leader in the area.
“What upsets me is that in some areas of France, Jews can no longer live peacefully, and that just five minutes from my home, some are forced to hide their kippas (skullcaps) or their Star of David,” Lewin said.