(JTA) — Venezuelan Jewish leaders met with President Hugo Chavez to discuss the increase in anti-Semitic attacks in the state-run media.
Representatives of the Venezuelan Confederation of Israelite Associations met Chavez Sept. 16 at the presidential palace in Caracas, where they presented him with many examples of anti-Semitic messages that appear in state-run and government-friendly media. The leaders also asked Chavez to re-establish diplomatic relations with Israel, The Associated Press reported.
The leaders thanked the government for raising security at Venezuelan synagogues and Jewish centers during the High Holidays.
In a message posted on his Twitter account, Chavez called the meeting "extraordinary" and said he and the Jewish leaders ended the meeting by "hugging and praying for peace," according to AP.
Chavez has attacked the Jewish community of Venezuela and Israel in speeches during his 12-year tenure in office.