Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Breaking News

French Politician Blames Media for Attacks on Jews

A French Jewish politician from Marseille suggested that the recent assault against three Jews there was connected to hostile media coverage of Israel in France.

Hagay Sobol, a regional alderman for the Socialist Party and vice president of Marseille’s Edmond Fleg Jewish Community Center, made the claim Sunday on Twitter in reference to the stabbing the previous day of a Jewish man by an attacker who also hit and accosted a rabbi and his 19-year-old son. The stabbing victim, 44, was seriously hurt but is no longer in danger.

“In this anti-Semitic attack, we cannot exclude the media coverage of the Israel-Palestine conflict,” Sobol wrote.

Many French and other European Jews and pro-Israel activists have complained of what they call biased reporting that presents Palestinians as victims who were hurt while trying to kill Jews in Israel.

In an interview with Actualite Juive, the rabbi, Acher Amoyal, said the man uttered unintelligible words, but also something that sounded like the Arab-language expression for “Allah is the greatest,” which Muslims sometimes shout while carrying out attacks.

The attacker, who was not named, was described by police as mentally ill and has been committed to a psychiatric institution after he was deemed unfit to stand trial, Le Parisian reported. He also was heavily inebriated when he committed the act, police sources said.

CRIF, the umbrella group of French Jewish communities, said in a statement that the assailant was of North African descent.

Approximately 1,000 people attended a pro-Israel rally on Sunday in Marseille, which CRIF organized in solidarity with Israel. Marseille has a large Jewish community.

A message from our editor-in-chief Jodi Rudoren

We're building on 127 years of independent journalism to help you develop deeper connections to what it means to be Jewish today.

With so much at stake for the Jewish people right now — war, rising antisemitism, a high-stakes U.S. presidential election — American Jews depend on the Forward's perspective, integrity and courage.

—  Jodi Rudoren, Editor-in-Chief 

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.