The leader of Marseille’s Jewish community on Tuesday urged Jews in the southern French port city to refrain from wearing skullcaps (kippot) after a teacher was hurt in an attack by a Turkish youth.
“Remove the kippah during this troubled time until better days,” said Zvi Ammar, head of Marseilless Israelite Consistory, a day after the Muslim attacked the 35-year-old Jewish teacher with a machete in broad daylight, leaving him wounded in the shoulder and one hand.
“Unfortunately for us, we are targeted. As soon as we are identified as Jewish we can be assaulted and even risk death,” he told AFP.
“For me, life is more sacred than any other criterion,” Ammar said, while adding that making such an appeal made him “sick to the stomach”.
The 15-year-old ethnic Kurd who attacked the teacher on Monday told police he was acting in the name of the ISIS terrorist group.
The attack was the third on Jews in recent months in Marseille, which has the second-largest population of Jews in France after the capital Paris.
Three Jews were assaulted in October, one of them with a knife, near a synagogue. The assailant was said to be drunk.
In November, another Jewish teacher was stabbed by terrorist youths shouting anti-Semitic obscenities and expressing support for ISIS.