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Amsterdam Mayor Promises Special Police Protection on High Holy Days

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Mayor Willem Polak has promised that there will be special police security around the city’s synagogue during the forthcoming High Holy Days. He pointed out in a radio program which is conducted by the Netherlands Ashkenazic Congregation that this will be a special effort since it is impossible to provide permanent police security for all the 10 synagogues in the city and other Jewish institutions here.

Polak, who is Jewish, noted that the municipal police department is severely understaffed. However, even if there was sufficient police personnel it would still be impossible to guarantee the absolute safety of all the Jewish institutions and all the members of the Jewish community which numbers about 12,000, he said.

Polak said the safety of Jews in this city depends on a number of conditions: police must be alert and well prepared and supplied to react as quickly as possible when the need arises; Jewish institutions must be specially guarded on occasions such as the High Holy Days when many Jews congregate in close quarters.

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