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Police: 'Satanic Cult' May Have Desecrated Haifa Synagogue

A Haifa synagogue was desecrated over the last several days, possibly by a local group of “Satanists.”
By David Lev
First Publish: 5/26/2013, 5:50 PM

Petach Tikvah Great Synagogue Desecrated
Petach Tikvah Great Synagogue Desecrated
Yoni Kempinski

A Haifa synagogue was desecrated over the last several days, with evidence indicating that the desecration may have been carried out by a local group of “Satanists.”

Worshippers discovered the desecration on Shabbat, and were shaken to see swastikas, anti-Semitic graffiti, and figures and drawings indicating “devil worship.” Similar desecrations have occurred in other cities in the past, and police have a clear profile of the nature of the attacks, including the latest one in Haifa.

Worshippers said that the vandals attempted to destroy whatever they could, including the handle that opens the door to the sanctuary, in their attempts to break in. Police have opened an investigation, and say that the action was most likely undertaken by groups of youths, some of whom may have been hanging around the synagogue hours before the damage was discovered.

This same synagogue has been attacked by anti-Semitic vandals before, worshippers said. In the previous attack, groups of youths scrawled swastikas on the door of the building, and later tried to burn the building down.

There have been several attacks on synagogues over the past several months around Israel. Several months ago, two synagogues in Bat Yam were desecrated, with one attacked two weeks in a row. Last month, vandals sprayed anti-Semitic graffiti on a synagogue in Kiryat Malachi. Police opened investigations in all these attacks, but have so far made no arrests.