Watch CBS News

Manhattan synagogue defaced, police say. It's the latest in a string of antisemitic incidents across NYC this week.

NYC synagogue vandalized in latest antisemitic incident in the city
NYC synagogue vandalized in latest antisemitic incident in the city 02:12

NEW YORK -- A Manhattan synagogue was defaced early Saturday morning, police say. It's the latest incident in a week-long escalation of antisemitic incidents across New York City.

Park Avenue Synagogue defaced

The Park Avenue Synagogue on the Upper East Side has a sign outside the building reading, "How great are your tents O Jacob your dwelling places O Israel." The text is a prayer in Judaism that expresses reverence for places of worship.

Police say just after midnight Friday, someone scrawled the word "Palestine" right under the word "Israel."

The synagogue posted online it is investigating and assured congregants that the building is secure. Services were still held this weekend.

The rabbi addressed it during Friday night Shabbat services.

"It's actually with a heavy heart that we begin Shabbat services tonight  ... The facility is OK, we are all safe, and it is shocking and it is distressing," Rabbi Elliot Cosgrove said.

The NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating.

The vandalism comes less than a month after the Second Gentleman visited the Park Avenue Synagogue to discuss steps he's taken to fight the rise in antisemitism.

"It's especially sad because the people in this institution are kind, fair-minded, always seeking justice and unity between people, and it just breaks my heart, frightens me terribly," congregant Zione Brotlen said. "There's confusion amongst people between what's going on in Israel and by the Israeli government and antisemitism ... My parents immigrated here after the war, and if they were still alive, they would be thinking, 'We never believed our daughter would be experiencing something akin to what we went through.'"

Multiple antisemitic incidents under investigation across NYC

On Wednesday, vandals doused the homes of Jewish board members of the Brooklyn Museum with red paint. Upside down triangles like the ones Hamas terrorist use to mark targets were drawn on the museum director's home. Police have released video of some of the suspects wearing masks and dark clothing.

Monday night, protesters praised terrorist groups outside the Nova Music Festival exhibit in Lower Manhattan. More than 300 people, mostly Jews, were murdered by Hamas at the festival on Oct. 7.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.