Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti has declared the city “stands against antisemitism” after jewish diners were attacked outside a Sushi restaurant on Tuesday.
The attack allegedly saw assailants shouting anti-Israel slogans before becoming involved in a physical alteration with diners at the Beverly Grove eatery.
“Los Angeles stands against antisemitism,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti, the LA Times reported. “We stand against the ideas that Jews should be singled out and attacked because of who they are. It mirrors what we have done too many times together, when we have stood up against Islamophobia or racism.”
Mayor Garcetti had earlier in the week tweeted that the violence was “an organised antisemitic attack” and pledged that the police would respond “with the full force of the law”.
We as a city condemn last night’s organized, anti-Semitic attack.
Jewish Angelenos, like all residents, should always feel safe in our city.@LAPDHQ is investigating this assault as a hate crime, and we will respond with the full force of the law. — MayorOfLA (@MayorOfLA) May 19, 2021
The incident took place amid prior to the ceasefire announced between Israel and Hamas, and following 11 days of violence that left at least 232 people in Gaza dead, and 12 people in Israel.
A witness at the scene said the LA attack, which is being investigated as a hate crime, came after a convoy of cars waving Palestinian flags pulled up outside the Sushi Fumi restaurant and passengers began asking if any of the diners were Jewish.
An Armenian named Mher defends Jewish diners from #antisemítico attack last night in LA. Story from @jdforward https://t.co/m1jtJXW0D3 pic.twitter.com/o85KTWvxVH — rob eshman (@Foodaism) May 19, 2021
After two people responded that they were, they were reportedly attacked by the men. Footage of the attack has since been circulating online.
The incident was also condemned by Islamic Center of Southern California, with a representative from the centre stating that the attack was unacceptable.
“I know how it feels to be alone, calling for peace and justice for your people,” said Tarifi, who is Palestinian. “Violence against Jewish bystanders on the streets of Los Angeles is not acceptable. It doesn’t further the Palestinian cause or any causes.”