Swastikas daubed on dozens of Jewish headstones in French graveyard

The graves were targeted overnight amid rising numbers of anti-Jewish attacks in the Alsace region


Hundreds of Jewish graves were covered in swastikas and antisemitic graffiti in a spate of hate crimes in Jewish cemeteries in France.

Maurice Dahan, the president of the Jewish community of the Bas-Rihn, in Alsace in the east of the country, described the attacks as “a shock”, confirming that the majority of graves were daubed with swastikas.

The local authority is investigating damage done to 107 Jewish graves at the cemetery in Westhoffen, which is roughly 15 miles west of Strasbourg, Mail Online reports.

Nearly 12 miles away, anti-Jewish inscriptions were found in the village of Shaffhouse-sur-Zorn.

France is home to Europe’s biggest Jewish community of around 550,000, and antisemitic attacks occur often, with more than 500 reported in 2018.

It included other cases of racist vandalism in the Alsace region, peaking with the desecration of 96 Jewish tombs at a cemetery in Quatzenheim in February.

French President Emmanuel Macron pledged after that incident to crack down on hate crime — including by renewed focus on anti-racism education in schools.

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