A Syrian migrant will face court in Berlin on Tuesday after he was caught whipping two Jewish men who were wearing traditional kippah skullcaps.
The defendant is a 19-year-old migrant from Syria who was registered at a refugee home in Brandenburg state outside Berlin, but who most recently was living “out of a suitcase” in the capital. He is identified only as Knaan Al S. because of German privacy rules, and will defend charges of causing bodily harm and slander.
The victim, an Arab Israeli, caught the April 17 assault in a video showing the attacker whipping him with a belt while shouting “Yehudi!” — Arabic for “Jew.”
— Jüdisches Forum (@JFDA_eV) April 17, 2018
In the video, Armoush lifts up his shirt and shows the bruises he sustained in the attack. According to police, Knaan Al S later picked up a glass bottle to hit Armoush again but a passerby intervened.
“They kept cursing us and my friend asked them to stop cursing,” Armoush told Kan TV. “They started to get angry and one of them ran to me and I knew it was important to film it because there would be no way to catch him by the time police arrived.”
“Honestly, I’m in total shock that a thing like this could happen,” he said in the interview.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned the assault as “a very horrible incident” and vowed her government would respond “with full force and resolve” against growing anti-Semitism in Germany.
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas tweeted that “Jews shall never again feel threatened here.”
“It’s our responsibility to protect Jewish life here,” he wrote.
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