Polish Jewish cemetery, Russian community center vandalized

(JTA) — A Jewish cemetery in western Poland and a Holocaust memorial site in Russia were defaced in suspected anti-Semitic attacks.

In Kalisz, near Wroclaw, a Star of David on a gallows and the inscription "Kalisz without Jews" were spray-painted on a Jewish cemetery and discovered on Feb. 20, according to naszemiasto.pl, a news site. 

In 1939, the slogan appeared on a large banner that was placed at one of the city’s main streets to greet the advancing Nazi forces.

Local police were informed of the incident, the website reported.

Separately, vandals smashed a Holocaust memorial outside the Ulyanovsk Jewish Community Center in Russia, near the city of Kazan, on Feb. 18. 

The vandals smashed the memorial, a menorah inaugurated during the international 2011 festival of Jewish culture in Ulyanovsk, after they failed to enter the adjacent JCC, according to a report by the Interfax news agency.  

Olga Bogatova, press officer for the Ulyanovsk Interior Ministry, told Interfax that a criminal case “may be opened.”

"This memorial is a national and religious symbol," Igor Devkerov, the leader of the Ulyanovsk Jewish community, said in a statement quoted by Interfax. Its desecration “hurts every Jew in our town.”

NEXT STORY