Paris, 23 August 2020 

In a letter to Elie Rosen, President of the Jewish Community of Graz, Austria, Dr. Shimon Samuels, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, expressed “horror at the physical attack against him outside the Graz synagogue,” adding, “we are gratified that you escaped harm.”

The Centre noted: “You carry a great responsibility for the phoenix character of rebirth of the Graz synagogue, burned down in the Kristallnacht Reichspogrom of 1938.”

Samuels found “troubling the recidivist assaults on the synagogue, first the outer wall smeared with Palestinian activist slogans, next the smashing of windows, followed by this attack against you.”

The letter continued, “We have noted your comment that ‘all these acts of vandalism are not Nazi (Volk) antisemitism, but come from leftist extremist antisemites’.”

“You have received expressions of support from political leaders across all parties in Austria. They must also take action to prevent recurrence, by timely identification, indictment and punishment of the perpetrators,” stressed Samuels.

“The Simon Wiesenthal Centre stands in solidarity with you and your community,” concluded the Centre.