Headstone at Jewish cemetery (illustrative)
Headstone at Jewish cemetery (illustrative)iStock

A Jewish cemetery on Cleveland’s west side was vandalized on Sunday, local media reported.

According to FOX8 Cleveland, a number of headstones were found spray painted with red swastikas at Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery, which was started in 1902.

The Jewish Federation of Cleveland said in the wake of the vandalism, “It is absolutely sickening that anyone could have so much hate for the Jewish people that they would desecrate Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery. This cowardly act to violate the memory of our elders only confirms what we already know: the hatred of the Jewish community here and around the world now is at a level not seen in generations.”

“We will support law enforcement in any way we can to see that those who are responsible face the consequences of their actions. We will restore the damage of the cemetery and return the dignity to the damaged gravesites. And we will continue combat hate against all communities with an unbending resolve,” it added.

As of Sunday afternoon, cleanup efforts were underway to remove the graffiti.

The incident comes amid a spike in incidents of antisemitism in the wake of the Israel-Hamas war.

Last week, a Los Angeles woman was charged with hate crimes after ramming her vehicle through the gate of a local synagogue and cultural center.

The incident came days after Paul Kessler, a 69-year-old Jewish man, died from blunt-force head trauma after he was hit in the head with a megaphone during a confrontation with a counterprotester at a Los Angeles protest.

Los Angeles police later said they had questioned the suspect but had not declared the incident a hate crime.

In other incidents, a 21-year-old student was charged with assault after he punched one person and slammed the thumb of another during a pro-Israel demonstration at New York University’s main library.

Last Monday, the University of Pennsylvania alerted the FBI of threatening messages its staff members received targeting its Jewish community, and an investigation is underway.