Israeli Flags Burned and Synagogues Attacked in Germany

Protesters set an Israeli flag on fire during a demonstration against Israel in front of t
OZAN KOSE/AFP via Getty Images

German police have arrested several people of “Arabic appearance” following attacks on synagogues in North Rhine-Westphalia, including incidents where suspects burned Israeli flags in front of temples.

Police responded to reports on Tuesday that people were burning Israeli flags outside of two synagogues in Münster and Bonn. Members of the public had reported seeing a “group of about 15 people with an Arabic appearance” at the Münster synagogue burning the flag and shouting slogans.

In Tempelstrasse, Bonn, too, responders found the remains of a burnt Israeli flag, and there was damage to the entrance of the synagogue where suspects had thrown stones at the building.

Police arrested two 20-year-old men and a 24-year-old man. Investigators also found three notes, allegedly written in Arabic, at the scene, according to Suddeutsche Zeitung.

Just the day before, a so-far unidentified suspect in Düsseldorf set fire to a memorial to the former Great Synagogue on Kasernenstrasse. The Great Synagogue had been destroyed after National Socialists set it on fire in 1938 during Kristallnacht.

Oded Horowitz, chairman of the Jewish Community in Düsseldorf, commented on the suspected arson attack, saying: “We are very concerned that this attack took place here in the heart of Düsseldorf, in the immediate context of the current escalation of violence in Israel.”

On Wednesday, police in Gelsenkirchen dispersed an anti-Israeli rally involving 180 people who marched towards a synagogue and chanted anti-Israeli slogans. Police stopped the demonstrators before they could reach the temple.

The protests and attacks on German synagogues come as the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, which began on Monday, continues.

In Israel proper, Arab-Israelis have attacked and set on fire synagogues in the city of Lod this week.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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