New York, NY, June 7, 2004 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today joined with French officials and the French Jewish community in condemning the attempted murder of a Jewish youth by an Arab immigrant in the Paris suburb of Epinay, and the violent attack of another Jewish youth outside his home in a Paris suburb by a group of young men yelling anti-Semitic slogans.
"At a time when there had been a lull in anti-Semitic attacks in France, thanks in large part to more effective law enforcement, these violent attacks against identifiably Jewish individuals are particularly troubling," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "We join with the French Jewish community in expressing outrage over these heinous attacks and we hope that the French authorities will do their utmost to investigate the crimes and prosecute the perpetrators to the fullest extent of the law.
"We welcome the strong and immediate condemnation of the attack by President Jacques Chirac and Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin," added Mr. Foxman. "Yet we believe the French nation as a whole needs to confront this rise of anti-Semitism, which is a serious threat to their society."
Israel Ifrah, 17, a yeshiva student, was stabbed in the chest on June 4 as he was walking from the Mekor Israel yeshiva in Epinay-sur-Seine to a nearby grocery store. The attacker, identified as an Arab immigrant, reportedly shouted "Allahu Aqbar" ("G-d is great" in Arabic) when he stabbed the youth, who was hospitalized.
This incident followed an anti-Semitic attack on May 30. The 17-year-old son of a rabbi was assaulted by a group of young men outside of his home in the Parisian suburb of Boulogne-Billancourt. The men hurled anti-Semitic insults and attempted to steal the youth's scooter, according to reports.