Wiesenthal Center Praises French Prime Minister Valls for Banning Potentially Dangerous Demonstration

Paris, 16 July 2014

The Simon Wiesenthal Centre expressed its appreciation to Prime Minister of France, Manuel Valls, for his immediate attention to its concern for Jewish safety and for the defence of the values of the French Republic.

According to police sources, the Gaza solidarity demonstration called for Saturday, 19 July by HAMAS supporters is banned, "Due to grave risks to public order in a context of aggravated tension."

The sources refer to "last Sunday's attacks on two synagogues following screams of 'Death to the Jews' at a similar pro-Palestinian crowd of over 7,000."

Photo: SWC officials at an earlier meeting with PM Valls

"Such a mob marching on a Shabbat and baying for Jewish blood, would have undoubtedly gone after synagogues filled with Jewish worshippers," noted Richard Odier, SWC-France President, and Shimon Samuels, the SWC Director for International Relations.

“Let us remember this is not an attack on free speech and the right to assemble. This is to prevent a reoccurrence for last week’s outrageous violent attacks in broad daylight that threatened hundreds of Jews assembled in the synagogue,” added SWC Dean and Founder Rabbi Marvin Hier.

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The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).