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Graffiti In Ultra-Orthodox Israeli City Calls President ‘Nazi Apostate’

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Graffiti referring to Israeli President Reuven Rivlin as a Nazi was spray painted on an elementary school in the largely haredi Orthodox city of Bnei Brak.

The graffiti discovered on Tuesday night read: “Rivlin is a Nazi apostate.”

It is the second incident in recent days. Late last week, graffiti at a school yard in the city called  Rivlin “an idol in the hall,” meaning abomination and impurity at a holy place, Ynet reported.

Rivlin visited the school that was vandalized on Tuesday, the Boston Talmud Torah, a haredi Orthodox school, at the beginning of the school year. He was criticized for visiting an Ashkenazi and not a Sephardi Orthodox school and also was condemned because the haredi Orthodox of the school do not recognize the state of Israel and therefore would not recognize its president.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the graffiti in a statement on Wednesday, saying:  “Writings such as this are worthy of every condemnation and do not belong in public discourse in Israel.”

Rivlin has been criticized in recent days for his address this week at the opening of the Knesset’s winter session in which he criticized the Knesset members for lack of statesmanship and negating justice and democracy.

Police are investigating the incident, which they say involves hate speech.

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