January 13, 2020

Antisemitic incidents dropped by 27% in Ukraine last year

A Jewish organization in Ukraine said that the number of antisemitic incidents documented there last year decreased by 27 percent over 2018.

The United Jewish Community of Ukraine, one of several groups representing Ukrainian Jewry, said in a report published Monday that it had documented 66 antisemitic incidents in 2019 compared to 90 in the previous year.

It attributed the purported change to the election in May of Volodymyr Zelensky, a Jewish actor, as president.

The Jewish group that published the report is headed by Igor Kolomoisky, a nationalist Jewish billionaire who owns the television channel where Zelensky worked.

Ukraine has no government watchdog that monitors racist incidents and publishes aggregated reports.

Organizations from within the fractious Jewish community of Ukraine have often disagreed on these issues.

Monday’s report details one physical assault on a person, an activist for free speech whom perpetrators beat up in December in Kiev while calling him a Jew.

Other cases included threats and antisemitic vandalism at Jewish cemeteries and Holocaust monuments.