Jewish Home chairman and Education Minister Naftali Bennett on Sunday condemned on Sunday the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville and called on US leaders to denounce its “displays of anti-Semitism.”
“The unhindered waving of Nazi flags and symbols in the US is not only offensive towards the Jewish community and other minorities, it also disrespects the millions of American soldiers who sacrificed their lives in order to protect the US and entire world from the Nazis,” he said in a statement
“The leaders of the US must condemn and denounce the displays of anti-Semitism seen over the past few days,” he added.
White nationalists assembled in Charlottesville on Friday to vent their frustration against the city’s plans to take down a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee.
Counter-protesters massed in opposition the next day. A few hours after violent encounters between the two groups, a car was driven into a crowd of people protesting the racist rally, killing a 32-year-old woman and injuring 26 others. The driver was later taken into custody.
Two Virginia state troopers were also killed when their police helicopter crashed and caught on fire while responding to clashes between white supremacist protesters and counterprotesters.
US President Donald Trump has come under mounting fire, even from members of his own party, for blaming the violence on hatred and bigotry “on many sides,” and not explicitly condemning the white extremist groups at the rally.
On Sunday, the White House released a statement clarifying that his condemnation of hate and bigotry at the “Unite the Right” Virginia rally had been in reference to the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis.