Teenager arrested by Swiss police on suspicion of stabbing an Orthodox Jewish man

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A teenager has been arrested on suspicion of stabbing and critically wounding an Orthodox Jewish man on the streets of Zurich, Swiss police said Sunday.

Zurich police said in a statement that they suspect antisemitism as the motive in the stabbing attack that occurred Saturday evening.

Police said they received a report of an argument involving several people at 9:35 p.m. According to their initial findings, the perpetrator attacked the 50-year-old man “and critically injured him with a stabbing weapon.”

Police described the perpetrator as 15-year-old Swiss citizen, and said they arrested him at the scene.

Police later issued a second statement saying that they were increasing security around certain sites with a Jewish connection as a precaution. They said they made the decision in consultation with Jewish groups.

The Swiss Organization of Jewish Communities said it was “deeply shocked that a community member fell victim to such an attack.”

“Physical attacks on Jewish people in Switzerland are very rare,” it said. „The Jewish community has been spared from such life-threatening attacks for the past two decades. However, there has been a significant increase in such physical attacks since Oct. 7.”

Across Europe there has been a rise in antisemitic acts since the start of the Israel-Hamas war, when Hamas-led militants stormed across southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing 1,200 people and taking about 250 others hostage. The number of Palestinians killed in the Gaza Strip since then has exceeded 30,000.

In France, a man wearing a Jewish skullcap was attacked while leaving a Paris synagogue on Friday evening, police said.

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