Weekend arson is second attack on synagogue in Crete
HANIA, Crete (WJC) –Following the second arson attack in less than two weeks, the roof of the historic synagogue in Hania, on the Greek island of Crete, is badly damaged and many books kept in the synagogue have been destroyed.
An unknown number of people entered the building in the early hours of Saturday morning, broke through a first-floor door and started a fire, police said. Two weeks ago, the Etz-Hayyim Synagogue – the only Jewish temple on Crete – was also attacked by arsonists. It had been restored in the late 1990s after years of neglect.
The nearly 300 members of Hania’s Jewish community were deported by Nazi troops in 1944 and died when their ship was sunk in transit by an Allied torpedo.
The Hania synagogue has since served as a place for prayer, a museum, and includes a library documenting the history of Crete’s Jews. Around 2,500 books, many of them rare editions, were destroyed in this and the previous arson attack, police said on Sunday.
Preceding provided by World Jewish Congress