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Ukrainian lawmaker demands apology

A Ukrainian Jewish lawmaker demanded an apology from a regional official over a seemingly anti-Semitic remark.

 

Member of Parliament Aleksandr Feldman, the president of the Jewish Foundation of Ukraine and chairman of the Kharkov Regional Jewish Community, told JTA he was incensed over Vasily Salygin’s New Year’s remark made at the Kharkov City Council session hall on Dec. 30.

 

Salygin, a head of the Kharkov Regional Council and leader of the Region’s Party regional organization, said he hoped “never to hear the sound of the greeting ‘Shalom!’ at the council session hall in the following year.”

 

Feldman told JTA he intends to bring an action against Salygin and expressed alarm that no Ukrainian politicians or public figures did not condemn the remark.

“I’m profoundly indignant over the incident, as it is not the first manifestation of xenophobia and anti-Semitism from Kharkov officials,” he said. “Ukraine is still too far from the civilized Europe.”

The Kharkov city newspaper Sobytia/Events wrote that “in every civilized country such statements are interpreted as a manifestation of anti-Semitism.”

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