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Dublin: 20 °C Thursday 6 August, 2020

'Shameful': 13 Jewish headstones destroyed in Belfast graveyard

Police are treating the incident as a hate crime.

Image: Google Street View

POLICE IN NORTHERN Ireland are investigating damage caused to 13 headstones in the Jewish section of a cemetery.

The PSNI said the graves were damaged “by a group of young people” last week at the city cemetery in west Belfast.

Today, Catholic Bishop of Down Connor Noel Treanor told RTÉ ”these shameful acts are a blemish on our society”.

“What a tragedy and blemish then that the long-present, beloved and treasured Jewish families of our community should suffer yet again such actions of disrespect, violence to the memory of their beloved dead and the regrettable outworking of a latent xenophobia that stalks the minds of some,” he said.

Speaking on Friday, local policing commander Chief Inspector Normal Haslett also condemned the acts of the youths involved:

This is a particularly sickening incident, which we are treating as a hate crime. To disturb the sanctity of a cemetery in this way is completely unacceptable and I can assure the public that we will conduct a robust investigation in a bid to bring those responsible before the courts.

Haslett appealed for anyone with information about the incident to contact police.

Read: Gardaí are not reviewing uniform policy about hijabs>

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