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'Israel, Protect Us!'

Ukraine's Jews report attacks, threats accompanying current rebellion are getting worse, ask for Israeli security personnel.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 2/25/2014, 12:19 PM

Protests in the Ukraine
Protests in the Ukraine
Reuters

In the face of increasing hostility toward Jews throughout the Ukraine, the Director of the Federation of Jewish Organizations in Europe, Rabbi Menahem Margolin, has asked Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon to act urgently and send trained security personnel to protect Jewish communities in the Ukraine. He specifically asked that the assistance be sent to cities and towns where there is a greater chance that the current unrest could take the form of anti-Semitic attacks.

Rabbi Margolin said that he was writing on behalf of the Jews of Ukraine. He also demanded that the heads of state in Europe make clear to opposition elements in Kiev that they are the ones responsible for ensuring that further attacks on Jews be avoided.

The rabbi informed the prime minister and defense minister of a growing feeling of dread among Jewish communities in the Ukraine, in the last 48 hours, as the anti-Semitic wave grows.

Among the events reporte, Rabbi Margolin lists: a fire bomb thrown at a synagogue in Zhprozha, a message telling the rabbi of Krivoy Rog that he must leave the city within 72 hours, a graffito on the home of the rabbi of Blitzkorov saying “we are already near you,” another graffito near a Jewish building in Kiev saying “you are next,” and other anti-Semitic graffiti.

"Reports from the communities indicate a worrisome trend, in which the acts of violence are focusing increasingly on Jewish targets as time goes by – and there is no one to save the victims,” the rabbi added. “The challenge is clear, as is the complex nature of taking security measures in a foreign sovereign country. But this is undoubtedly a Jewish emergency.”

"In the name of the Jews of Ukraine, the Center of European Rabbis and the Federation of Jewish Organizations in the EU, I implore you to take any step necessary, including sending security men, to secure the safety of the Jewish communities in the Ukraine, until calm is restored.”

"The IAF flyover in the skies above Auschwitz sent a clear message that the state will assure Jewish security even in foreign countries,” he added.