British police said Wednesday they are investigating a video that appeared to show a group of men spitting at a bus full of Jewish people celebrating Hanukkah in central London.
The Community Security Trust, a charity that monitors anti-Semitic incidents, said the open-top bus was full of people celebrating the first night of Hanukkah on Oxford Street, one of the British capital’s busiest shopping streets. It said the party was “interrupted by an extremely hostile, threatening and abusive group of men.”
Video taken from the bus appeared to show the men shouting and making obscene hand gestures and Nazi salutes at the people on the privately hired bus. The Metropolitan Police said Monday’s incident is being treated as a hate crime. No arrests have yet been made.
Those on the bus were from a religious outreach organization called Chabad, which arranges for candelabras to be put up around the British capital to mark the Jewish holiday, said Dave Rich, the Community Security Trust’s director of policy.
They “were quite frightened that the group who were threatening them were going to physically assault them, they were spitting at them,” Rich said. “They definitely felt it was because they were Jewish that they’d been targeted, there was absolutely no doubt about that.”
“Antisemitism has no place whatsoever in society and I utterly condemn these disgusting acts,” London Mayor Sadiq Khan tweeted.