WATCH: Man hurls abuse at Jews at OR Tambo airport

2018-06-21 15:50

The South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) has issued a statement, following what it says is a rise in anti-Semitic and threatening attacks made against South African Jews on social media and in person.

The statement comes after a passenger was filmed shouting verbal insults at fellow travellers at OR Tambo International Airport on Thursday morning.

In the video, the man is seen shouting and screaming "Jews are wicked". It was captured by passenger Dylan Rendel, who had just landed in Johannesburg from Tel Aviv, Israel.

Rendel said they had been waiting for their baggage when the man, who has not been identified, started hurling abuse.  

"All was well and the next thing this man came up and started unleashing some vulgar verbal comments, making racist remarks and blatant anti-Semitic remarks against Jewish people," Rendel said. 

"You people are wicked, Jews are very wicked people. Tell your government to change," the man is heard shouting in the video. 


Rendel said it was disturbing to witness his abuse because visitors who were with their children were verbally attacked for no good reason. 

Rendel added that, towards the end of the man's tirade, he said he had been denied access to Israel and had been sent back home. 

"I can't confirm, but I think he was apparently in the same flight with us and was probably under guard on the aeroplane, because there was no violence or any problems on board. Only when we were waiting for our luggage, he started shouting," Rendel said. 

No assistance 

Rendel said security officials from the airport only came to investigate at the end of the man's rant. He said a man from one of the airline counters had tried to calm him down, but with no success.

"No security guard came to stop the man for a good five to ten minutes. Only later, two police officers came and tried to speak to the guy and took him away," he said. 

Rendel, who had just returned from a holiday to Israel, told News24 how upset and disappointed he was in what happened. 

"We couldn’t believe it, because I mean, the world portrays Israel and Jews to be terrible people. We had just got back from the most incredible holiday in Israel. We were at the gay pride parade… People on the beach, having the most incredible calm and freedom. And then I come back home and for 10 minutes into our airports, this is what we encounter. It's very upsetting." he added. 

The Airports Company of South Africa said it was aware of the incident. 

Increase in incidents against Jews

The SAJBD said it was following up on various incidents, including the airport one, saying they had generated great anxiety and anger in the Jewish community.

SAJBD chairperson Shaun Zagnoev said a mural with a German flag - and a swastika placed on it -had appeared on Hamilton Street in Coronationville, Johannesburg, on Thursday.

He said it was unfortunately common to find anti-Semitic content online. However, he said it was rare for it to take "virulent and inflammatory a form, as with the latest reported comments".

"The posts show how easily radical anti-Israel sentiment can spill over into hateful slurs and threats against Jewish people in general. We are being told that we are 'scum', 'rat', 'bastards', 'pigs', 'swine' and 'fat-nosed f**ks'. We are further being warned that "our time is coming" and that "the Holocaust will be a picnic after we are done with you'," Zagnoev said. 

He added that the incidents were not only attacks on the Jewish community, but on South Africa's democracy.

"Any minority group is protected by the Constitution, which protects our freedom of expression and association," he said.

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

Read more on:    sajbd  |  johannesburg  |  religion  |  hate speech

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
 

How your dog can tell what you’re feeling

Researchers have found a specific area in a dog’s brain that recognises human faces – a finding that may help to explain why dogs are so sensitive to human social cues.

 

Paws

Share your 67 minutes with animals in need this Mandela Day
Kevin Anderson’s dog is winning at Instagram!
Kim Kardashian-West buys fake testicles to boost her dog’s self-esteem
10 tips on exercising your dog
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.