Thursday, January 12, 2006

Russian billionaire offers to fly stabbing victims to Israel for medical care

From here:

Russian-born billionaire Arkady Gaidamak offered Wednesday night to fly the victims of the stabbing attack in a Moscow synagogue to Israel for medical care. Gaidamak is visiting Moscow and his house is close to the synagogue, the news website reported.

Three of the injured are Israelis and one is an American citizen. Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom demanded that the Russian government fight growing anti-Semitism in the country.

Earlier news reports said that a young man wielding a knife and shouting “Heil Hitler” ran amok in a synagogue in central Moscow on Wednesday, wounding eight people.

Racist attacks have mushroomed in Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union, mostly carried out by young men attracted to extreme right-wing views.

Russian Chief Rabbi Berl Lazar blamed a fascist “plague” for the attack.

“In places where the ideas of fascism are propagandized, in the end without fail they will turn into reality, as happened today in Moscow,” he told news agency Interfax by telephone from Jerusalem on Wednesday evening.

An Israeli government report has ranked Russia third after France and Britain for instances of anti-Semitic violence. More than a million Jews left for Israel in the last years of the Soviet Union, but around a million remain.