Photo: AP

43 Jewish graves desecrated in Vienna

Tombstones, slabs found toppled or damaged at Austrian capital's Central Cemetery

Austrian authorities are investigating the desecration of 43 graves in two Jewish sections of Vienna's main cemetery.


A police statement said Friday that tombstones and slabs were found toppled or damaged at the Austrian capital's Central Cemetery. It said the vandals did not deface the graves with graffiti.


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Vienna Jewish community head Oskar Deutsch says he is confident that police will find the culprits.


The past year has a number of incidents around the world in which Jewish graves were desecrated. Last March over 30 Jewish graves were vandalized in a cemetery in the city of Nice in southern France, five days after three schoolchildren and a rabbi were murdered in front of a Jewish school in Toulouse.


According to reports, the vandals tore off 22 Stars of David that were affixed on candle lamps built into the tombstones. They also tried to tear out nine other Stars of David, but only managed to twist them. In addition, four candle lamps were missing.


That same month, more than a dozen headstones in two sections of the Florida National Cemetery were found pushed over or dug out.


The headstones were identified as Jewish by the Stars of David on them.


"It's a shame because we consider this to be holy ground," Cemetery Director Kurt Rotar said at the time.


According to the sheriff's office, the damaged plots included those who had served in World War II, Vietnam and the Korean War.


Department spokesman Lt. Bobby Caruthers said the incident is being investigated as a hate crime.



פרסום ראשון: 06.30.12, 09:43
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