London Jews Facing Spree of Antisemitic Attacks
Dion J. Pierre
Man arriving at a synagogue near to steal salmon. Photo: Screenshot.
An antisemitic “hate crimes pandemic” has been breaking out in the Stamford Hill and Hackney sections of London since October 29, according to information released by the area’s Jewish community watch group, Shomrim.
“The racism pandemic continues,” the group tweeted on Tuesday, reporting on an incident — one of eight that have occurred in just several days — in which a known local assaulted a Jewish resident of Stamford Hill while yelling, “You Jews, you think you run the world.”
In another, a man broke into a synagogue’s school, stealing $340 worth of salmon and, Shomrim said, “leaving the children without a proper lunch.”
A previous wave of antisemitic assaults over the summer put the London Jewish community on high alert.
In July, a woman wielding a wooden stick approached a Jewish woman near the Seven Sisters area and declared,”I am doing it because you are Jew,” while striking her over the head and pouring liquid on her. The next day, the same woman, described by an eyewitness as a “serial racist, chased a mother and her baby with a wooden stick after spraying liquid on the baby.
In other, separate episodes reported by Shomrim, a woman threatened Jewish congregants leaving Shabbat services on Friday night, shouting, “f*** you Jews, I will kill you,” while another account described “hundreds of Jewish men and boys” being similarly harassed as they returned from synagogue.
In August, the United Kingdom’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) began a criminal trial against Abdullah Qureshi, who trekked 200 miles from West Yorkshire to Stamford Hill to assault members of the Jewish community.
The incidents all took place that month. In the first, Qureshi struck a 30-year-old man on the head with a bottle. A second victim was a 14-year-old boy whom he physically assaulted. The third was a 64-year-old man whom he brutally punched in the face, causing him to fall and break a bone in his foot.
Not all assailants face criminal charges, however. In February, Dave Rich, Head of Policy at Community Security Trust (CST), argued that “too few cases reach court” despite that nearly a quarter of religiously motivated hate crimes in London target the Jewish community.
‘The wheels of justice of justice seem to be stuck,” he wrote.
This year, Metropolitan Police has so far recorded 466 antisemitic hate crimes in London. CPS does not provide data showing how many suspects it has charged and tried.