Paris Holocaust memorial vandalised as city rocked by riots

Jewish organisations said the vandalism was 'horrifying' and 'shameful'


A Holocaust memorial has been vandalised by protesters angered by the killing of a teenager by French police.

Jewish groups were left outraged after the Memorial to the Martyrs of the Deportation was defaced in the Nanterre suburb of Paris, France on Thursday.

The memorial commemorates 200,000 Jews who were deported from France to Nazi concentration camps during World War II.

Video footage circulating on Twitter shows protesters vandalising the monument and sitting atop the memorial as they protest against French police for the fatal shooting of a 17-year-old North African teen.

According to a video from Twitter account ‘Observatory of Decolonialism’, protesters said they were going to start another Holocaust. They wrote on the memorial: “We are going to make a Shoah”.

Stores and restaurants run by Jews were also set on fire in Sarcelles, Radio Shalom reported. 

Ariel Goldmann, president of the United Jewish Social Fund, said of the vandalism: “It is an absolute outrage and a disgrace. Nothing is respected.” 

The European Jewish Congress added: “It is truly horrifying to witness the Memorial to the Martyrs of the Deportation in Nanterre being vandalised. 

“This shameful act of disrespect for the memory of the victims of the Holocaust must be unequivocally condemned and those responsible held accountable.”

The unrest has come in response to the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Nahel, whose death has revived longstanding grievances about policing and racial profiling in France's low-income and multi-ethnic suburbs.

Around 40,000 police and gendarmes - along with elite Raid and GIGN units - were deployed in several cities overnight, with curfews issued in municipalities around Paris and bans on public gatherings in Lille and Tourcoing in the country's north.

In Nanterre, the epicentre of the unrest, tensions rose around midnight, with fireworks and explosives set off in the Pablo Picasso district, where Nahel had lived.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive