Photos of Holocaust survivors on exhibit in Vienna vandalized for 3rd time
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Photos of Holocaust survivors on exhibit in Vienna vandalized for 3rd time

‘Austria, what’s wrong with you?’ asks photographer Luigi Toscano, after his public display is defaced again

Illustrative. Larger-than-life portraits by Italian photographer Luigi Toscano line a fence bordering United Nations headquarters, January 23, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/ Kathy Willens)
Illustrative. Larger-than-life portraits by Italian photographer Luigi Toscano line a fence bordering United Nations headquarters, January 23, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/ Kathy Willens)

An exhibit of photos of Holocaust survivors lining a major street in downtown Vienna, Austria, was vandalized for a third time on Monday.

Holes were cut into the portraits of the survivors taken by German-Italian photographer and filmmaker Luigi Toscano, days after some were defaced with swastikas and cut into with knives, according to Die Presse, a Vienna-based German-language daily newspaper.

The portraits have been on display since May 7. The exhibit is scheduled to be taken down at the end of the month.

About one-third of the photos were vandalized.

In a post on Facebook, Toscano wrote: “I’m just speechless, again there was an attack on my photos. Austria, what’s wrong with you?”

Ich bin einfach nur sprachlos, schon wieder gab es ein Anschlag auf meine Bilder.Österreich was ist los mit…

פורסם על ידי ‏‎Luigi Toscano‎‏ ב- יום שני, 27 במאי 2019

The Vienna State Office for the Protection of the Constitution and Counter Terrorism is now investigating the vandalism.

The attack may have been captured by surveillance cameras, according to the report.

Austria has seen a rise in anti-Semitic incidents in recent years, as well as a surge in support for the far-right Freedom Party (FPOe), which became the junior partner in Kurz’s government after elections in 2017.

The head of the FPOe, which was founded in the 1950s by former Nazis, resigned Saturday after a hidden camera sting showed him promising public contracts in return for campaign help from a fake Russian backer, a development welcomed by the head of Austria’s Jewish community.

AP contributed to this report.

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