The Launceston Jewish community is reeling from an act of vandalism on the city’s 1844 synagogue, with the city’s Rabbi calling the act a “disgrace” and “a crime against everyone”.
LAUNCESTON’S Jewish community is reeling after an act of vandalism on the city’s synagogue.
A Star of David on the gate of the 1844 heritage-listed building, was defaced last week – seemingly with a black marker.
The St John Street building is the second-oldest synagogue in Australia after Hobart and is considered a rare example of Egyptian revival architecture in the country.
Launceston Rabbi Yochanan Gordon said the city’s Jewish community was hurt by the vandalism.
“Launceston has always been a city that got together to fight hatred,” he said.
“Today the community has been hurt by the actions of individuals, and when one defaces a Jewish symbol – especially on a synagogue – it is a crime against everyone.”
He said the Jewish community thanked the Launceston residents who reported the vandalism, which showed him the wider community stood “together against this disgrace”.
Melbourne-based academic and Anti-Defamation Commission chairman Dvir Abramovich described the defacement as “cowardly vandalism” and an attack on “all those who cherish the values of religious freedom”.