Montreal

Vandalism of Côte Saint-Luc synagogue decried as 'shameful'

A small place of worship inside a home in the west-end municipality has been ransacked, with sacred texts and other items strewn on the ground and put into the toilet.

B'nai Brith Canada has retracted its call for incident to be investigated as hate crime

The Sepharade Kol Yehouda synagogue is located in a home in Côte Saint-Luc. (CBC)

UPDATE: Jewish groups such as the Federation CJA released joint statement on June 5 saying preliminary reports indicate that Congregation Kol Yehuda was not specifically targeted as a Jewish institution and the vandalism was not motivated by hate.

Below is the original story.


A Jewish organization called vandalism at a Côte Saint-Luc synagogue "brazen and shameful" and wants police to investigate the incident as a hate crime.

Sepharade Kol Yehouda synagogue, a small place of worship inside a home in the west-end municipality, was ransacked, with sacred texts and other items strewn on the ground and put into the toilet, a congregant discovered Thursday.

B'nai Brith Canada, an advocacy organization for the promotion of Jewish unity and defending the state of Israel, said the discovery was made when the congregant and his son were retrieving items from the synagogue to celebrate the Shavuot holiday at home.

The synagogue, located in a single-family home in the municipality, is closed along with the rest of the province's places of worship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prayer shawls and scrolls were found in the synagogue toilet. (Submitted by B'nai Brith Canada)

"This disgusting act of antisemitism comes on the eve of our holiday of Shavuot, a celebration of the Jews receiving the Torah, especially the Ten Commandments," said B'nai Brith Canada chief executive officer Michael Mostyn in a statement.

The incident has been reported to Montreal police and the organization is calling on police to check in on other nearby synagogues to see if they have been vandalized as well.

Police did not immediately offer comment on the case.

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