Arrest made in attack on Bosnian Jewish leader


(JTA) — A man was arrested in connection with the attack on Bosnian Jewish leader Eli Tauber.

Tauber, an adviser on culture and religious affairs for the Jewish Community of Bosnia and Herzegovina, was attacked by a man wielding a weighted chain at a cafe in central Sarajevo. Many witnessed the attack.

The attack, which was widely reported in the Bosnian media, occurred on March 21 while journalists from National Geographic magazine were interviewing Tauber about the status of Jews in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

No motive has been determined, but the attack has received high-profile coverage by the local media. Some fear that Tauber, who recently established a foundation to promote Jewish culture in Bosnia and Herzegovina. was attacked because he is a prominent member of the Jewish community.

“If he was attacked because he is Jewish and because as such he is present in our media, just because he is doing his job, then it would be a very bad sign both for Sarajevo and for Bosnia and Herzegovina,” Jakob Finci, president of the Jewish Community of Bosnia and Herzegovina, told

Finci said it was the first such attack on a Jewish person in Sarajevo in 70 years.

Tauber said the attacker, identified as Ahmet Focak, intended to kill him. Focak was arrested two days after the attack.

Tauber is an advocate for bringing to light the suffering of Sarajevans during the Bosnia and Herzegovina war from 1992 to 1995.

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