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Two more American synagogues evacuated after bomb threats ahead of Jewish New Year

New Jersey police officers stand guard in front of the United Synagogue of Hoboken in New Jersey, November 4, 2022. (Photo: REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz)

One synagogue in California and another in Florida were recently evacuated after receiving bomb threats.

Some 50 synagogues in 13 American states have reportedly received bomb threat calls since July, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which monitors antisemitic developments in America and abroad.

ADL says it expects more bomb threats during this time when Jews in the United States and worldwide are preparing for Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year holiday which begins on Friday evening.

Oren Segal, vice president of the ADL’s Center on Extremism, assessed the challenging security situation for a growing number of U.S. synagogues.

“Every weekend this network of swatters continues to identify targets and are calling in fake bomb threats, Segal said. “So that number is increasing and will potentially keep increasing."

Congregation Beth Am in Los Altos Hills, California, one of the two recently threatened synagogues, vowed to remain resilient amid growing Jew-hatred.

“As a community, we remain resolute and determined in the face of this act of anti-Semitic harassment,” the congregation wrote in a letter to its members.

The other synagogue recently threatened was B’nai Israel in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Rabbi Philip Weintraub stressed that the evacuation of the synagogue did not affect the community’s worship service.

“It was not disruptive to our worship,” he said, adding that the local police “took it very seriously.”

In April, Tel Aviv University and the ADL revealed a sharp increase in Jew-hatred in the United States and other Western countries in 2022 compared to 2021, according to their annual report on antisemitism.

Much of worldwide antisemitism is linked to anti-Zionism and hatred toward the State of Israel.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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