Justin Trudeau
Justin TrudeauREUTERS/Jessica Lee

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met on Wednesday with the Chief of Toronto Police, Myron Demkiw, amid the sharp increase in acts of antisemitism in the city.

A statement by Trudeau said he and Demkiw “discussed the recent increase in antisemitic incidents in Toronto and spoke about their shared commitment to keeping people safe across the city.”

Trudeau also met with leaders of the Jewish community in Toronto who are concerned about the increase in antisemitism following the Hamas attack against Israel on October 7.

“To the members of the Jewish community who spoke with us today: Thank you. Thank you for speaking so candidly about your pain, your anger, and your grief. I hear you. I want you to know that our commitment to you – and to Israel, as a Jewish and democratic state – is unwavering,” Trudeau wrote on X following the meeting.

Recently published information from the Toronto Police Service shows that incidents targeting the city’s Jewish community nearly doubled in 2023.

Recent incidents of antisemitism in Toronto include threats to the Community Hebrew Academy of Toronto, a Jewish high school in the district of North York.

The school was targeted again several weeks later when it was briefly evacuated following a bomb threat.

In early November, an Indigo book store in downtown Toronto was vandalized with red paint and posters plastered on its front windows wrongfully accusing its Jewish founder and CEO, Heather Reisman, of “Funding Genocide.”

Last week, a Jewish-owned grocery store in Toronto was spray-painted with the words “Free Palestine” and later set on fire.

In the last few days there have been two incidents of antisemitism in the city of Vaughan, located just north of Toronto.

On Saturday, a 34-year-old was arrested in what police are calling a suspected hate-motivated assault.

The incident occurred as a group of four Jewish adults were walking home from a synagogue when they were approached by a man on an e-bike. Police say the victims felt intimidated by the way the man was riding the bike near them.

An argument broke out before the man allegedly spat at the group and made antisemitic comments. He rode away before officers arrived, before being arrested a few hours later.

On Tuesday, two masked men shattered the windows of an SUV in Vaughan, which was adorned with decals of the Israeli flag. The suspects fled the scene and police are searching for them.