Hero Workmen in London Stabbing Attack

by Avi Abelow

A hassidic Jewish man was stabbed on Friday in a suspected hate crime in London’s Stoke Newington.

The man stabbed is Rabbi Alter Yaacov Schlesinger, an Orthodox Rabbi in his 50s, the father of six from Stamford Hill’s Satmar community.. He was standing on line outside the bank when the perpetrator attacked him stabbing him multiple times including in his head and neck. He was taken to a major trauma centre after the attack in Stoke Newington on Friday morning. Police said his condition was not life-threatening.

His attacker was restrained by members of the public until police arrived.

One of them, construction site manager Lazar Friedlander, said he ran to the scene with his brother after hearing a “serious scream”.

He said “We ran outside, I saw a Jewish man covered in blood. I’m Jewish myself, and I can see another Jewish man shouting ‘hold him, catch him, he’s got a knife! Stabbing!’

“There were a couple of other people trying to grab him. Me and my brother managed to force him down and put his hands behind his back until the police came.”

Israeli Diaspora Affairs Minister Omer Yankelevich tweeted on Friday that the attack “demonstrates that Jews in the Diaspora continue to face the threat of antisemitism even during this pandemic outbreak of the coronavirus.

“I intend to augment the program to combat antisemitism and to ensure the security needs of Jews worldwide. We are the address for all Jews globally,” she added. “Antisemitic incidents have become commonplace and part of what Jews around the world are going through,” Vice Chairman of the World Zionist Organization Yaakov Hagoel said in response to the stabbing.

“Unfortunately, as I said, once we were able to walk around the streets after the coronavirus passed, antisemitic events would rise and even become more physical and violent, and here we are witnessing an antisemitic stabbing incident.

“I call on the authorities to deal with the perpetrator to the fullest extent of the law,” Hagoel added.

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