Austria decries fake blood attack at anti-Semitism event

AFP - [email protected]
Austria decries fake blood attack at anti-Semitism event
Austrian minister for European affairs Karoline Edtstadler speaks at a press conference after her meeting with French minister for European affairs at the Austrian chancellery in Vienna, Austria, on November 9, 2020. (Photo by JOE KLAMAR / AFP)

Austria's minister in charge of Europe on Tuesday hit out at an "attack on our values" after a man threw fake blood at an anti-Semitism conference in Vienna.


As elsewhere in Europe, anti-Semitic acts have been on the rise in Austria since the war between Israel and Hamas broke out.

A man on Monday poured several litres of fake blood at the entrance to a building in downtown Vienna, where government, Jewish and civil society representatives were meeting to discuss anti-Semitism in Europe.

Police were able to prevent conference participants, including Austria's minister in charge of Europe, Karoline Edtstadler, from being hit.

"It was not just an attack against me, but also an attack against our values," Edtstadler said on Tuesday.

Chancellor Karl Nehammer also said the assault had "crossed the line".


The man behind the attack told Austrian news agency APA that he was a member of the Jewish community wanting to protest Austria's "normalisation of a genocide", referring to Israel's actions in the Gaza war against Hamas.


The number of anti-Semitic incidents in Austria has increased from an average of two a day in 2022 to eight a day since last October, according to the country's Jewish community association that keeps track of such events.

That was the month when Palestinian group Hamas launched an unprecedented attack on Israel, which resulted in the deaths of more than 1,170 people, mostly civilians, according to an AFP tally of Israeli official figures.

Militants also seized around 250 hostages, with an estimated 128 remaining in Gaza, including 35 the Israeli military says are dead.

That sparked war, with Israel vowing to destroy Hamas and launching a retaliatory offensive that has killed at least 34,789 people in Gaza, mostly women and children, according to the Hamas-run territory's health ministry.



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