Skinheads (Archive photo)
An emissary of the Union of Jewish Communities in Russia was the target of an attack by skinheads Saturday evening in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine, Ynet has learned.
The man, Haim Gorbov, who studies at a Safed yeshiva, returned to Ukraine as part of a Seder organized by the Union of Jewish Communities in Russia and the former Soviet Union. After Gorbov's condition improved he was released from hospital.
It appears a gang of skinheads in the city sought to mark Hitler's birthday, April 20, by attacking a Jew. Dnepropetrovsk's Chief Rabbi Shmuel Kamintzky said that at first the skinheads tried to attack a group of yeshiva students in the city center, between the synagogue and the yeshiva in which they studied. They managed to escape, however, and the thugs then set upon the 20-year-old Gorbov.
Gorbov, who has Ukrainian citizenship, studied at the Or Avner school and after graduating arrived in Israel in order to study at a yeshiva in Safed. Rabbi Kamintzky said that at first the thugs struck him with a bottle on his head, but when they realized that the hat he was wearing was protecting him against serious injury they stabbed him in the chest and fled.
The President of the Union of Jewish Communities in Russia and the Soviet Union, Lev Laviev, called on the Ukrainian government not to be satisfied with another investigation into an attack on Jews after they take place.
"The rise in anti-Semitic activity demands immediate and determined preventative action. Whoever doesn't invest in fighting skinheads who are attacking minorities will have to deal with them when they increase the level of violence towards the whole of Ukrainian society," said Laviev.
Two months ago security guards thwarted a stabbing attack on the central synagogue in Kiev, Ukraine. The incident took place when a 65 year-old man arrived at the synagogue and asked to meet the rabbis. While speaking to the guards, the man pulled out a knife and said that all Jews should be killed.
The guards overpowered the attacker and handed him over to the police.
Meanwhile, Dnepropetrovsk's Chief of Police Alexander Beveilov, who is himself Jewish and who took part in the Passover Seder organized by the Jewish community in the city, promised Rabbi Kamintzky that police would hunt down the skinheads responsible for the attack.
Jewish Agency head Ze'ev Bielsky said that "we are at a situation 60 years after the Holocaust where Jews in Ukraine and Russia live under nonstop harassment.