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L.A. City, Faith Leaders Denounce Anti-Semitic Restaurant Attack

Published: (Updated: ) in Jewish News by .

Garcetti said an attack on one faith was an attack on all faiths.

The post L.A. City, Faith Leaders Denounce Anti-Semitic Restaurant Attack appeared first on Jewish Journal.

 

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti denounced an antisemitic attack that occurred outside a sushi restaurant in West Hollywood on Tuesday night.

“This is a moment for our Jewish community to stand united — and, unfortunately, for all of us to stand united — to be able to speak against antisemitism,” he said during a May 19 Zoom call, which his office organized with Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Koretz.

The call on Wednesday evening drew elected officials, LAPD officers and faith and community leaders, including Salam Al-Marayati, president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), who strongly condemned the incident, a video of which was widely shared on social media on Wednesday.

“What I saw was nothing less than thuggery,” Al-Marayati said, describing the video, which depicts pro-Palestinians driving in a caravan, waving flags and attacking diners, including several Jewish people, outside Sushi Fumi on La Cienega Boulevard on May 18. The MPAC leader called upon the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) to conduct an investigation of the incident and other recent antisemitic crimes.

The LAPD is investigating the incident as a hate crime. As of publication time, no arrests had been made in connection with the attack.

Koretz — who visited the restaurant to speak with LAPD the night of the attack, which had occurred in his district — said the attack reminded him of what his father experienced on Kristallnacht before the Holocaust. “Certainly not something I ever expected to start to see in the City of Los Angeles,” he said.

The city councilman said he welcomed a diversity of opinions about the ongoing violence in the Middle East — seen as a catalyst of the attack — but added acts of hate were unacceptable.

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Additional participants on the private call included LAPD Deputy Chief Vito Palazzolo, LAPD Assistant Chief Beatrice Girmala, Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles CEO Jay Sanderson and Anti-Defamation League Regional Director Jeffrey Abrams.

Sanderson described the events outside the restaurant as “blatant anti-Semitism.”

Abrams said the ADL is offering a $5,000 reward, in consultation with the LAPD, for information leading to the arrest of those involved in the incident. He also called on city leaders to use their bully pulpit to strongly condemn the recent and “unambiguous acts of violence.”

Another speaker on the call, American Jewish Committee Regional Director Richard Hirschhaut, said the unity various communities have demonstrated in denouncing the violence was an encouraging sign, particularly as the public emerges from the pandemic.

the unity various communities have demonstrated in denouncing the violence was an encouraging sign, particularly as the public emerges from the pandemic.

The restaurant attack on Tuesday night took place amid ongoing violence between Israelis and Hamas in the Gaza Strip as well as on the heels of numerous anti-Israel demonstrations occurring around Los Angeles. According to LAPD, it was one of at least two incidents targeting Jews in Los Angeles following the dramatic uptick in violence between Israel and Hamas.

Along with the restaurant attack, police are investigating a May 17 incident involving an Orthodox man being chased by two cars on La Brea Avenue in the Fairfax District. The passengers in the vehicles can be seen in a video, captured on closed-circuit television, waving Palestinian flags. Law enforcement does not believe the two incidents are related, the Los Angeles Times reported.

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Additionally, LAPD officials described a window being smashed at Orange Delite and Grill, a kosher restaurant in Sherman Oaks, at the conclusion of Shavuot. But LAPD said they have no evidence to indicate the window smashing was a hate crime.

While speakers in the Zoom conversation were short on specifics about the police investigation, Garcetti appeared to suggest they were making progress in identifying and apprehending those involved.

“The vaguer we are,” the L.A. mayor said, “the more confident we are.”

The post L.A. City, Faith Leaders Denounce Anti-Semitic Restaurant Attack appeared first on Jewish Journal.

Source: Jewish Journal https://jewishjournal.com/news/336842/l-a-city-faith-leaders-denounce-anti-semitic-restaurant-attack/

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