Hundred of anti-Semitic announcements warning Russian parents to beware of the supposed Jewish practice of using children's blood to prepare Passover matza were put up around the city of Novosibirsk, Russia in southwest Siberia on Wednesday.
"Beware Russian parents. Keep watch over your children before the coming of April 2008, the Jewish holiday of Passover. These disgusting people still engage in ritual practice to their gods. They kidnap small children and remove some of their blood and use it to prepare their holy food (matza). They throw the bodies (of the children) out in garbage dumps," the announcements read.
"Esther", a resident of Novosibirsk, told Ynet: "I saw the announcement, however I won't be afraid of going to synagogue during Passover. In my house, we will have matzot.
"Anti-Semitism exists in the city and it never disappears. You can walk around in the streets and see derogatory sayings scrawled on the walls of houses; 'Jews go home' and such. The announcement simply disgusted me.
"These anti-Semites merely want to divert the attention of the city's residents away from the problems that exist in the area and blame the Jews for everything. I personally am not afraid because my children are in Israel."
Approximately 13,000 Jews live in the Novosibirsk area, with most living in the city itself.
Since the beginning of this year, Russia has experienced dozens of anti-Semitic acts – including violent attacks on Jews, derogatory graffiti and the vandalism of Jewish cemeteries.
Anti-Semitism on rise
Recently, the US government published its yearly report that stated that anti-Semitism, which promotes hatred towards Jews under the guise of criticism against the State of Israel, has increased in the last 10 years.
The report claimed that the Belarus government openly disseminates anti-Semitic material. It also said that government-controlled media outlets in Saudi Arabia and Egypt broadcast anti-Semitic programs.
Additional acts of anti-Semitism were recorded in Poland, Russia, Ukraine, France, Germany, the UK, Argentina, Australia, Canada and South Africa.
"Contemporary anti-Semitism appears openly and in disguised forms in place where there are Jewish communities just like in places where there are few Jewish people. Violent anti-Semitic crimes are carried out – beginning with from terrorism carried out against Jews to desecrating and destroying Jewish property such as synagogues and cemeteries," the report stated.
Amos Hermon, the Jewish Agency official in charge of the fight against anti-Semitism, told Ynet following the incident in Novosibirsk that "this is an appalling and extraordinary incident. I really hope that we're not going back to the period at the beginning of the previous century in which Jews were blamed and put on trial for killing children.
"We hope and we are sure that the Russian government will find those who distributed (the announcement) and work to stamp out the phenomenon."