Russian firm removes anti-Semitic ad featuring Orthodox Jew
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Russian firm removes anti-Semitic ad featuring Orthodox Jew

Asset management company Novoselye, which used a Haredi Jew as a cartoon money lender on billboards in St. Petersburg, takes them down after complaints

A billboard advertising the Novoselye housing firm showing an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man as a money lender, in St. Petersburg, Russia, July 2019. (Courtesy Jeps.ru/via JTA)
A billboard advertising the Novoselye housing firm showing an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man as a money lender, in St. Petersburg, Russia, July 2019. (Courtesy Jeps.ru/via JTA)

JTA — An asset management firm in Russia removed billboards featuring a depiction of a Haredi Jew as a money lender extending one hand with the words: “Goodbye rent!”

In St. Petersburg, the billboards installed earlier this month by the Novoselye firm, which offers mortgage plans and housing packages, had prompted allegations of anti-Semitism.

“Definitely anti-Semitic: An exploitation of the theme that all Jews are usurers,” one critic of the billboard, Natalya Zonova, wrote on the page of the Choral Synagogue Jewish community of St. Petersburg through V Kontakte, the Russian version of Facebook. That community also called for the billboard’s removal.

Amid criticism, Novoselye agreed to remove the billboards if a majority of respondents to a poll it published on V Kontakte voted for its removal. Out of 967 voters, only 46 percent did so. Still, the firm agreed to have the billboard removed to avoid offending people who found it anti-Semitic.

Separately, unidentified individuals painted a Star of David with the word “cemetery” on the external wall of a magazine store in Offenbach near Frankfurt, Germany, on Sunday.

In France, the entrance to an elementary school in the town of Mauperthuis near Paris was covered with lewd and anti-Semitic slogans earlier this week, including “death to the Jews” and a swastika.

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