A synagogue in Berlin has reportedly been targeted Wednesday by individuals who threw two Molotov cocktails at it in what a German Jewish group is calling a “terrorist attack.”
The incident at the Kahal Adass Jisroel community drew a strong condemnation from German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who said, “We will never accept when attacks are carried out against Jewish institutions.”
“Unknown persons threw two Molotov cocktails from the street,” Kahal Adass Jisroel wrote on X.
Police said they were investigating “an attempted serious arson” in which two people approached the synagogue by foot at 3:45 a.m. and threw two Molotov cocktails, which burst on the sidewalk next to the building. The two people, their faces covered, ran away.
“We are all shocked by this terrorist attack,” the Central Council of Jews said in a statement. “Above all, the families from the neighborhood around the synagogue are shocked and unsettled. Words become deeds. Hamas’ ideology of extermination against everything Jewish is also having an effect in Germany.”
A couple of hours later, when police were investigating the incident, a 30-year-old man approached the synagogue on a scooter, threw it aside and tried running toward the building. When police officers detained him, he resisted and shouted anti-Israeli slogans.
The Kahal Adass Jisroel posted a video on X purportedly showing German police officers restraining an individual on the ground.
The Associated Press reports that the Kahal Adass Jisroel complex includes a synagogue, a kindergarten, a yeshiva school and a community center.
Police also said there were riots overnight between Muslim immigrants and police in the city’s Neukoelln and Kreuzberg neighborhoods and at Berlin’s landmark Brandenburg Gate in which several officers were injured, according to the AP.
“We stand united for the protection of Jews,” the AP quoted Scholz as saying Wednesday during a trip to Germany.
A rabbi and member of the Kahal Adass Jisroel community, Shlomo Afanasev, said he was shocked by the attack.
“I go to the synagogue since 2006, and… I always go with my kippah on,” he told the AP. “We felt until today very safe here. And never thought something like this could happen in this area. In the middle of Berlin.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.