Federation CJA, CIJA, Kol Yehuda : No indication that vandalism of Kol Yehuda Synagogue was motivated by antisemitism
Montreal, June 5, 2020 – Last week, a number media outlets reported on an incident of vandalism at the small Kol Yehuda Synagogue, located in a private home in Côte-Saint-Luc. Federation CJA and its Director of Community Security Jacques Bisson, in cooperation with the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA), has been working closely with Montreal police (SPVM) and the synagogue leadership while a thorough investigation is currently underway.
At this point, preliminary reports indicate that Congregation Kol Yehuda was not specifically targeted as a Jewish institution. The Congregation itself is not visibly identified from the exterior as a synagogue and is a few doors down from one of Cote Saint Luc’s largest synagogues.
“FCJA has a long history of cooperation with the SPVM, and our Director of Community security, works closely with Montreal Jewish community institutions on security coordination,” said Federation CJA CEO, Yair Szlak. “While it is painful and unacceptable to experience any sort of vandalism to a synagogue and to sacred objects, this criminal act appears to be case of breaking and entering. We have every confidence that the SPVM are doing their utmost to find those behind this incident”.
“Damage inside a place of worship and to ritual items always tugs at our heartstrings, but we must be guided by the facts. To date there are no indications or tell-tale signs of a crime of act of vandalism motivated by antisemitism. We will continue to work with the SPVM and our partners at Federation CJA to ensure that the truth comes to light”, added Eta Yudin, CIJA Vice-President (Quebec).
“Our little synagogue is very dear to our congregation and we were heartbroken to discover this damage. Thanks to the investigation of the SPVM and the support of Federation CJA, we now understand that the incident was likely a case of opportunistic breaking and entering”, concluded Daniel Amar of the Kol Yehuda Congregation.