On Monday, city employees discovered that a tree planted in memory of Ilan Halimi in a Parisian suburb had been cut off, while another had been cut down. Halimi, 23, was kidnapped, tortured and murdered during an anti-Semitic attack in 2006.
The attack on the Halimi memorial is one of four acts of anti-Semitism in Paris widely reported since Sunday. On Monday, portraits of the late politician and Holocaust survivor Simone Veil, painted on mailboxes in the city, were discovered to have been degraded with swastikas.
Artist Christian Guemy, who created the portraits to commemorate the Veil's burial at the Pantheon in 2018, tweeted a photo of the vandalized mailboxes. "Shame on the one who horribly disfigured my homage to the survivor of the Holocaust Simone Veil, painted on the mailboxes of the 13th arrondissement of Paris at the time of her pantheonization, with a swastika," wrote Guemy . "What cowardice … very shocking."
On the same day, Frédéric Potier of the Interministerial Delegation for Combating Racism, Anti-Semitism and Anti-LGBT Hatred (DILCRAH) tweeted a photo of antisemitic graffiti in a Parisian garage. "When the hatred of the Jews combines with the hatred of democracy, the language of the fascist sphere appears on the walls!" Potter wrote.
Gilles Abecassis, co-founder of Bagelstein, a French chain of bagels, said Sunday that one of the stores had been graffiti of the word "Juden". The German word "Jews" was sprayed with yellow paint on the window of a shop on Île Saint-Louis, an island in the Seine.
The Minister of the Interior, Christophe Castaner, underlined in front of the vandalized memorial returned to Halimi Monday the resurgence of anti-Semitic acts.
Since 2016, at least 11 people have been killed in antisemitic violence in France. In March 2018, Mireille Knoll, an 85-year-old Holocaust survivor, was murdered in her Paris apartment, an act of brutality that forced thousands of people to demonstrate in the capital. The previous year, Sarah Halimi, aged 65, had also been killed in her city apartment and thrown from her balcony during an antisemitic attack.
Four people were killed and fifteen others held hostage in a kosher supermarket in Paris in 2015, during a siege organized by a Charlie Hebdo shooters' associate. Three years earlier, three children and a teacher had been murdered in a Jewish school in Toulouse.
"We are very far from having finished anti-Semitism," Prime Minister Philippe said in November.
The study also revealed a great ignorance of the Holocaust, especially among younger generations. One in 18 French people aged 18 to 34 said they had never heard of the Holocaust.