Swastikas spray-painted outside Jewish congregation in Wellington

Wellington - A police investigation is underway after swastikas were spray-painted around the Wellington CBD, including outside a synagogue, on Wednesday morning. 

The graffiti was painted on The Terrace and outside the Wellington Jewish Progressive Congregation on Ghuznee St. 

Temple Sinai chair Matthew Smith said his community had been left "vulnerable and insecure" following the incident. 

"It does not come as a total surprise. Recent events in New Zealand, in particular the mosque attacks, and also the global rise of anti-semitism indicates there is hate within our society," he said.

Smith hoped the graffiti would not go unnoticed. 

"We should not be ignoring this, we should be confronting it. It leaves our members feeling vulnerable and insecure.

"We take our security seriously and there is an increasingly realisation we need more support." 

A council spokeswoman said the graffiti was removed quickly, the police informed and security teams and managers of parks and cemeteries notified.

It comes the same week that the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau is being commemorated. 

Smith believed the graffiti and the anniversary were likely connected. 

"The past has shown that incidents like this occur in proximity to other events. 

"It strikes me the timing not being an accident."

Source: nzherald