A synagogue in Bondy, an eastern suburb of Paris, was set alight by firebombs early Friday as Grand Rabbi of France Joseph Sitruk called on the Jewish community to remain calm in the wake of anti-Semitic attacks provoked by the Middle East crisis.
The attacker or attackers climbed in through a window and lobbed several incendiary bombs into the synagogue, which caught fire. No one was hurt, local public safety officials said.
Firebombs were thrown at a local Israeli school late Thursday, also without claiming any victims, police said.
Molotov cocktails have damaged several synagogues and buildings have been covered in anti-Semite graffiti in recent days in France, as the situation worsened in the Middle East, causing concern among the Jewish community and condemnation from President Jacques Chirac.
Sitruk said Friday in an article in Le Parisien/Aujourd'hui: "I am split between revulsion and concern. These are anti-Semite acts. I call upon my community to keep all its calm. But it is up to the public powers to protect Jews, the same way as all our citizens."
On Wednesday Chirac pleaded for inter-communal peace in the face of growing tensions between French Jews and Muslims, and condemned the attacks as a violation of democracy – PARIS (AFP)
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