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Thursday, September 01, 2005


Three arrested in anti-Semitic Kyiv attack

From European Jewish Press (page includes graphic picture of attack victim):

Three unemployed Ukrainian men were arrested on Tuesday suspected of assaulting a Jewish student who is now fighting for his life in hospital.

A 32-year-old Jewish student was attacked and severely beaten Sunday night by a group of people in Kiev. He was transported to hospital in a critical condition.

The group of assailants attacked Mordekhai Molozhenov, a student at a nearby yeshiva, or Jewish seminar, near “Mandarin-Plaza”, in an underground passage in the center of the capital.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko pledged Tuesday that his government would fight racism.

"We condemn racism and xenophobia in all of its forms," Yushchenko said in a statement released by his press service.

"Such incidents are unacceptable for Kiev and Ukraine and I will demand from all government representatives that they conduct serious work to prevent such shameful acts," he said.

A local media, Mig News pointed out that nobody of the bypasses responded anyhow to what they saw. Near the beaten pupil there were pools of blood (what is seen from the photo), but nobody rendered first aid, if it were not his fellows in studying, could have died.

Mordekhai Molozenov was transported to the reanimation department where he was operated as it was necessary to remove the hematoma of the brains. He is said to be in a critical condition and doctors are afraid for his life.

Ukrainian Interior Minister, Yury Lutsenko, announced that the police arrested three unemployed Ukrainian suspected of attacking the student. "The three men were in drunkenness situation," the ministry precised in a public statement."

The statement pointed out that "for the moment, there is no information proving the aggression was motivated by anti-Semitism or xenophobia." The statement nevertheless said "the mobile of the attack will be determined by the investigation."

Contacted by EJP, Rabbi Yaakov Dov Bleich, one of the chiefs rabbis of Ukraine, said that what happened on Sunday "did not come out from nowhere".

He explained that this terrible act, is the result two latent problems.

"First of all, what happened could be explained by the lack of reaction, of the government and the authorities in general, to the persistent vehement environment toward Jews in Ukraine," Bleich pointed ou. "Furthermore, the incitement of some of the media, mostly in the press is a key factor in the rise of racism in the country," the Rabbi added.

He underlined the fact that since the new government came to power 9 months ago, those anti-Semite and racist groups felt “bolder” to openly incite the populace to anti-Semitic acts.

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