FBI tells synagogues in New Jersey to keep safe after credible threat

The FBI is warning synagogues in the US state of New Jersey to keep safe after it says it has obtained credible threats online. The threats were apparently broad in scope, but the FBI has urged all synagogues to “take all security precautions to protect your community and facility.”

According to NPR.org, the online threat did not target any specific synagogue by name and officials say they could not discuss details of their investigation publicly. Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop says police would increase their presence at the city’s seven synagogues and add foot patrols in the broader Jewish community.

Democratic Rep. Josh Gottheimer, whose district encompasses part of the area in northern New Jersey affected by those attacks, attributed the latest anti-semitism wave to statements made by Kanye West. He then also named NBA star Kyrie Irving as contributing to the problem through his social media posts.

“I am deeply concerned and outraged by today’s alert from the FBI. This is what happens after years of anti-Semitic comments from public figures, including, most recently, Kanye West, Kyrie Irving, and others.”

Back in 2019, two anti-Jewish assailants killed three people in a kosher market in Jersey City. They also killed a police officer. And, five years ago two New Jersey men were sentenced to 35 years in prison after being found guilty of a series of attacks back in 2012. Those attacks included throwing a Molotov cocktail into the home of a rabbi as he slept with his family and firebombings of two synagogues.

The recent FBI alert has seen the Jewish community in New Jersey become even more alarmed than before. Police officers are now armed with rifles and standing outside of synagogues in Hoboken, which is one city over from Jersey City. There, a public safety director has also called for increased patrols in the area. So far, no more information has been released concerning the threat received by the FBI.

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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