Shalom Life | March 24, 2015

Despite anti-Semitic Slurs, Officials Claim Attack on London Synagogue is Not anti-Semitism

Jewish community claims attack was isolated "anti-Social" attack by drunk, boorish young men and women

By: Daniel Koren

Published: March 23rd, 2015 in News » World

Photo: Worshipers inside Ahavas Torah synagogue try to keep attackers out

Credit: YouTube Screenshot


Following the Sabbath and in the early hours of Sunday, March 22nd, a video emerged depicting a group of twenty some-odd young men and women who boorishly and drunkenly attacked a London synagogue.

The video was instantly posted online, and showed the group as they attempted to enter the Ahavas Torah synagogue in Stamford Hill, throwing objects through the door and smashing the windows while hurling anti-Semitic slurs at the worshipers inside.

One worshiper suffered minor injuries to his face as he tried to prevent the group from entering the synagogue, and was taken to the hospital for treatment. Four men and two women were arrested at the scene, and London police continue to look for the remaining suspects who attacked the synagogue.

"The incident is being treated as an anti-Semitic incident, due to remarks made by one of the group," said a spokesman for the Metropolitan London police.

"At this early stage, there is no suggestion that this was a far-right or extremist attack but rather the completely unacceptable actions of a drunken group," the spokesman continued.

Rabbi Maurice Davis of Ahavas Torah, however, told the BBC, "I think this incident was more anti-social than anti-Semitic."

Davis continued that the Jewish neighbourhood of Stamford Hill remains a safe haven for Jews of all denominations, and that residents should not fear their safety following the attack.

Shomrim, a Jewish neighbourhood patrol group, added that the attack was an isolated incident.

“The incident is not believed to be a targeted or planned attack, although some anti-Semitic remarks may have been made by some of the group,” the patrol group said in a statement.

Throughout the video, the group of intoxicated young adults can be seen banging on the synagogue doors, and occasionally, some women entered the synagogue to apologize for the damage being caused.


Other clips circulated online depicted London police arriving on scene, heavily armed.

“We are investigating to establish the full circumstances of the incident and to identify anyone else involved in the disturbance who has not yet been arrested,” Inspector Jonathan Waterfield said, according to BBC. “We have also increased police patrols in the Stamford Hill area to provide reassurance to the community.”

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