Jewish Australian MP targeted by anti-Israel vandals

Michael Danby’s Melbourne office plastered with stickers accusing Israel of genocide, apartheid and ethnic cleansing

Melbourne office of Australian MP Michael Danby plastered with anti-Israel stickers on July 15, 2018. (Courtesy Anti-Defamation Commission)
Melbourne office of Australian MP Michael Danby plastered with anti-Israel stickers on July 15, 2018. (Courtesy Anti-Defamation Commission)

The Melbourne office of a Jewish Australian parliamentarian was targeted with anti-Israel stickers on Saturday night, drawing condemnation from Jewish groups.

The office of Michael Danby, a Labor Party member, was covered with stickers underneath his name saying he was “Silent on apartheid” and “Silent on the mass murder of unarmed men, women, infants, children, medics and journalists.”

Other stickers added, “Silence gives Israel a green light to commit genocide… but only when it happens in occupied Palestine” and accused the MP of being “silent on ethnic cleansing.”

The Brisbane arm of Justice for Palestine shared an image of the attack on its Facebook page, but did not claim the vandalism.

Michael Danby (photo credit: public domain)

Representatives of the Jewish community condemned the attack.

“We deplore in the strongest terms this repugnant vandalism and anti-Semitic propaganda which is a direct attack on Mr Danby and on democracy, and which has absolutely no place in our nation,” said Dvir Abramovich, chairman of Australia’s Anti-Defamation Commission.

“The individuals who committed this cowardly act of hate have crossed the line. We call on leaders across the political spectrum to express their outrage at this vicious and obscene assault against an elected representative and to say that such vile conduct is unacceptable in any circumstance,” he added.

Alex Ryvchin, the head of Executive Council of Australian Jewry, said it was a “pitiful act” by “small-minded bigots,” The Australian news site reported.

“Falling foul of small-minded bigots is what comes from standing for democratic values, opposing terrorism and supporting the human and national rights of the Jewish people,” he said.

Danby, who announced he is to retire at the end of the current session after 20 years as a lawmaker and who in 1998-2007 was the only Jewish MP in Australian federal government, has described himself as a strong supporter of Israel.

A spokesperson for Danby told The Australian that the authorities had been notified about the attack.

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