Hateful graffiti was scrawled on buildings belonging to three human rights organizations in south Tel Aviv Wednesday early morning.
Two of the targeted buildings belonged to Amnesty International and ASSAF – the Aid Organization for Refugees and Asylum Seekers. The third was a preschool run by Elifelet – Citizens for Refugee Children. In all three cases, the graffiti said, “The wicked man shall die in his iniquity.”
In addition to the malicious writings, a box with a dead mouse inside was left near the preschool, the groups said. Death threats were spray-painted on the outside of the box, which the staff found before the children arrived.
Security cameras at the Amnesty office caught the perpetrator on film, though his face was concealed. Amnesty filed a police complaint Wednesday afternoon.
In November, Amnesty also filed a police complaint after two employees received threatening emails, but that case was closed earlier this month. One of the emails said, “In the not-so-distant future, you’ll pay for your activities against residents of south Tel Aviv, other residents and the State of Israel. We’ll get you.”
A police officer said that case was closed because the IP address from which the emails were sent originated in a server farm in the United States, so police were unable to determine who sent them.
In a joint press statement, the three organizations targeted on Wednesday said, “This morning’s death threats are the result of the ongoing campaign of incitement against aid organizations and human rights groups. When politicians back extremist statements, encourage hate and incite to racism against weaker segments of society, there are people who listen to them.
“We aren’t interested in the identity of the perpetrator; that’s the police’s responsibility, and we’re sure the police will do its job and find those immediately responsible,” the statement continued.
“Nevertheless, sole responsibility rests with the Israeli government, which incites wildly against human rights organizations and activists, calls them traitors and conducts a deliberate, orchestrated, well-managed campaign of delegitimization against Israeli minorities and the weaker segments of society, and against those who make the voices of these communities heard.”
In a separate statement, ASSAF added, “Despite the ongoing distress in these neighborhoods, we’re certain that no resident of south Tel Aviv was behind these threats or supports them.”
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