Ottawa, Canada - Vandals hit Jewish Cemetery

The Ottawa police hate crime unit has launched an investigation into another defacement of a Jewish cemetery.

The Jewish Memorial Gardens near Greely was vandalized sometime Wednesday night.

Nazi swastikas and anti-Semitic epithets were sprayed on the walls that mark the entrance to the cemetery. Eight headstones were also defaced, police said.

A neighbour alerted police to the vandalism this morning.

Mitchell Bellman, president of the Jewish Federation of Ottawa, said the incident has shaken the community to its core.

“It’s horrible to see these images and see such hatred in a spot that’s there to bring comfort to the deceased and their families,” he said. “It’s very disturbing to see these images and see what people would do to what we consider sacred space.”

Det. John Byers said the hate crime unit will head the investigation. “It is a hate crime, absolutely,” he said.

Jewish Memorial Gardens, located just south of Greely, is one of two designated cemeteries for the Ottawa Jewish community. The oldest one, on Bank Street, has a limited number of plots left.

The Bank Street cemetery was vandalized twice in 2007. In one instance, five youths were seen running from the scene. No one was arrested in either incident.

SOURCE:  VosIzNeias

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