SYNAGOGUE BURNED IN ARKHANGELSK
Interfax-Religiia, 13 April 2020
The Jewish cultural center "North Star" in Arkhangelsk was set on fire in the night of Sunday-Monday. An investigation is under way, the press service of the regional department of the emergency ministry reported.
The blaze broke out at 3:46 Moscow time. Eyewitnesses reported the fire and the nearest fire and rescue department was immediately dispatched.
"The flame was stopped at the entrance by groups from the cultural center. Glass and a door were damaged there and 4 square meters of the entry were covered with soot. The fire was started using tires and fuel," the press service noted.
This synagogue has already been subjected to attack several times. In April 2015, when the building was being constructed, it was struck with automatic weapon's fire and antisemitic slogans were left on the building. In 2016, unidentified persons threw a bottle with a Molotov cocktail at the building under construction, but quick reaction by security prevented ignition.
The North Star, the northernmost synagogue in Russia, was opened in Arkhangelsk in the autumn of 2018. The cornerstone was laid in June 2010 by the chief rabbi of Russia, Berl Lazar. (tr. by PDS, posted 13 April 2020)
F.E.O.R. CALLS ARSON OF SYNAGOGUE IN ARKHANGELSK DETESTABLE
Interfax-Religiia, 13 April 2020
The president of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia (FEOR), Alexander Boroda, condemned the arson of a synagogue in Arkhangelsk and he called it a crime against the whole of society that is experiencing a difficult time.
"It is an absolutely heinous act. There is no need to explain to anybody that vandalism is despicable and does not have the right to exist in a civilized world," Boroda told Interfax on Monday.
The rabbi noted that it is necessary to investigate the event carefully and in detail. "The act is of a clearly antisemitic nature and it is not simply arson of a synagogue but in the direct sense the incitement of inter-religious and inter-ethnic hatred. Now is a difficult time for everybody and it demands increased responsibility from society. Only by relying on mutual help is it possible to overcome the difficulties and to save tens of thousands of lives," the leader of the Jewish community thinks.
In his opinion, arson of a synagogue is "an act against all people, regardless of their nationality and religious confession. It affirms hatred and evil, which are destructive, not creative, forces."
Boroda expressed confidence that specially authorized bodies will deal with the investigation with all intensity and undertake further steps. "We are proud that we live in a country where the public display of xenophobia is rare, but we must not lose vigilance and we must do everything that is within our power so that such a thing is not repeated," the rabbi summed up.
The North Star Jewish cultural center in Arkhangelsk was set on fire in the night of Monday. This synagogue has already been subjected to attack more than once: in April 2015, when it was being built, the building was shot up with an automatic weapon and antisemitic slogans were left on the building and in 2016, unidentified persons threw a bottle with a Molotov cocktail into the building under construction.
The northernmost synagogue in Russia, North Star was opened in Arkhangelsk in the autumn of 2018. (tr. by PDS, posted 13 April 2020)
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