Tombstones vandalized at Jewish cemetery in Poland
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Tombstones vandalized at Jewish cemetery in Poland

Around 20 headstones damaged in third case of vandalism at Polish Jewish graveyard this month

Toppled headstones at the Jewish cemetery of Zabrze, Poland on September 11, 2020. (Dariusz Walerjański via JTA)
Toppled headstones at the Jewish cemetery of Zabrze, Poland on September 11, 2020. (Dariusz Walerjański via JTA)

WARSAW (JTA) — About 20 tombstones were damaged at a Jewish cemetery in Zabrze in southern Poland, the third case of vandalism at a Polish Jewish cemetery this month.

Dariusz Walerjanski, who has maintained the cemetery for 30 years, described what he said was an act of vandalism in a Facebook post on September 11. In photos he posted online, several of the stones appeared to have broken.

“After many years of peace and tolerance, and understanding for the place where the dead rest, an act of vandalism was committed. It’s a rude act of stupidity. I can’t find an answer for why someone planned and did it,” he wrote.

Police are searching for the perpetrators, he added.

Last week, a 19th century tombstone at the Jewish cemetery in Tarnowskie Gory, near Krakow, was defaced with red spray paint.

Earlier in the month, ten tombstones were knocked down at the Jewish cemetery of Dobrodzien, some 80 miles northwest of Krakow. Some of them were broken.

Poland has about 1,200 Jewish cemeteries. Some are owned by Jewish communities and others are municipally owned.

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