A French rabbi and his son were stabbed Tuesday morning at a Paris synagogue in the city’s 9th arrondissement by an Iranian psychiatric hospital fugitive yelling “Allahu akbar.”
Citing a member of the congregation who was attending the morning prayer services during the attack, the French news agency JSSNews reported that the attacker entered the Paris synagogue on la rue Saulnier and injured “Rabbi Baroukh” and his son in an assassination attempt.
The rabbi was identified Philippe Baroukh, 50.
Baroukh and his son, 18, were stabbed in the neck, according to French newspaper Le Monde. The father was lightly injured.
According to torahbox.com, the attack took place at the Beth-El synagogue. Neither Baroukh nor his son were in mortal danger, the report said.
Eyewitnesses said the attacker was a deranged man who had escaped from a local psychiatric facility. The suspect, 28, was detained by witnesses at the scene until police arrived and taken into custody.
In the first eight months of 2012, SPCJ, the security unit of French Jewish communities, counted 386 of what it called “anti-Semitic acts,” representing a 45-percent increase compared to the corresponding period in 2011, when SPCJ counted 266 such incidents.
SPCJ said the figures correlated to official data by French authorities.
France has a Jewish population of some 500,000, according to the European Jewish Congress.
JTA contributed to this report.