Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Tunisia's Parliament votes on new Government

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

French court rules #burkini ban "clearly illegal"

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Biden in Turkey, Colombia Peace Deal, Ethiopia Olympic Protest (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Earthquake in Italy, French Burkini Ruling (part 1)

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

The hidden secrets of Les Invalides

Read more

FOCUS

Pro-Opposition stronghold Port-Gentil feverishly awaits presidential elections

Read more

ENCORE!

Alexis Michalik: treading the boards in the footsteps of 'Edmond'

Read more

REPORTERS

Getting away with murder in DR Congo

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Why does Italy refuse to see the seismic risk?'

Read more

Americas

Chavez condemns vandalism at synagogue

Latest update : 2009-02-02

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez condemned the anti-Semitic vandalism on the main synagogue in Caracas after fifteen people broke into the site, destroyed scriptures and sprayed racist graffiti overnight on Friday.

AFP - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez Sunday condemned the vandalism of the main synagogue in Caracas, suggesting the opposition may have been involved.

"We condemn the (vandalism) acts in Caracas, as well as the arson in the El Avila (hills in Caracas), which the oligarchy does not. We condemn violence, whatever its origins, and we will fight it wherever it comes from," said Chavez, saying his government was "far from being involved in the violence."

The Venezuelan president singled out the opposition and especially students, whom he accused of troublemaking in the streets, for setting El Avila ablaze and instigating violence after Caracas last month broke off ties with the Jewish state last month over its deadly war on Gaza.

"The oligarchy is the violence. It kills, it plots ... it uses blood-thirsty youth who have no soul, sends them like cannon fodder to fuel violence," he added.

About fifteen people broke into Venezuela's main synagogue overnight Friday, tied and gagged the guards, destroyed scriptures and sprayed anti-Semitic graffiti.

Israel deplored the attack and said "such acts could not have taken place without the benevolent gaze of the authorities at the highest level."

Elias Farache, president of Venezuela's Jewish Association, attributed rising tensions with the country's Jewish community to recent diplomatic upsets between Venezuela and Israel.

Venezuela cut diplomatic ties with Israel in mid-January in protest over the Jewish state's deadly military assault in the Gaza Strip that left more than 1,330 Palestinians dead. Chavez referred to the Israeli attacks as "genocide."

On January 6, the Venezuelan government expelled Israel's ambassador in Caracas, Shlomo Cohen. A day later, Israel responded by expelling Venezuela's charge d'affaires in Tel Aviv.
 

Date created : 2009-02-02

COMMENT(S)