Mexican Jews accused the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Buenos Aires office of interfering in local politics. Mauricio Lulka, executive director of the Central Committee of the Jewish Community of Mexico, said the center should have consulted with the local community before denouncing alleged “incitement to violence” by Mexican anti-Semites at an anti-abortion rally. Mexican Jews were aware of the protest, but it was “absolutely unimportant, from an insignificant group,” Lulka wrote in an e-mail to JTA on Thursday. “We do not share the worries of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which by the way should have verified and consulted with our community before acting.” In an April 19 open letter to Mexican Interior Minister Genaro Garcia Luna, the center called on the Mexican government to “take the necessary measures to guarantee the protection and safety” of Mexico’s 40,000 Jews after the left-leaning La Jornada newspaper reported that some anti-abortion protesters had carried anti-Semitic placards. According to the paper, the protesters, who opposed a debate by the Mexico City government on decriminalizing abortion, carried a sign saying they “declare war on the terrorism sowed by Jews and Freemasons against the Mexican family.” The abortion decriminalization measure passed this week.Last year, the center drew criticism from Venezuelan Jews when it denounced alleged anti-Semitic language from Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. The country’s Jewish community said the center misinterpreted the language, although many observers said the local community indeed felt uneasy but was afraid to anger the government by saying so publicly.
Mexican Jews rebuke Wiesenthal Center