Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Was murder of Tripoli-born Jew a hate crime?

Jews followed the body in an impromptu cortege

The murder of a 74-year-old Libyan-born Jew in Rome, a pillar of the Jewish community, has shocked the city's Jews. Could it have been an antisemitic crime? Raffi Cohen's wallet and briefcase were left at the scene, Corriere della Sera reports. (With thanks: Eliyahu)

ROME - Rome's Jewish community is in shock. A pensioner, one of the more prominent and beloved of the community, was killed with a knife to the heart in via Lanciani, Rome, on June 13. The man, Raffi Cohen, aged 74, was found stabbed to death inside the gatehouse of the caretaker of the building where he lived in the area of Ponte Lanciani.

On him was found his wallet. His body lay with a deep stab wound to the heart and a head injury, most likely inflicted by a long blade. A neighbour sounded the alarm. Robbery would seem to have been ruled out: nothing was missing from the wallet. The president of the Jewish community, Riccardo Pacifici, rushed to the scene.

Dozens from the Jewish community followed the van bearing the body in an impromptu funeral cortege from the police mortuary, many of them wearing kippot or covering their heads in prayer.

Read article in full (Italian)


Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

Here's the report from Guysen News in French:
Un retraité de confession juive assassiné à Rome au cours de la visite de Netanyahou dans la capitale italienne (Guysen.International.News)

Un retraité juif a été assassiné à Rome lors de la visite du Premier ministre Benjamin Netanyahou dans la capitale italienne. L'homme de 74 ans a été poignardé lundi soir dans le quartier Nomentano. Son corps a été découvert à l'entrée de l'immeuble où il résidait. La victime, qui a jouait un rôle central dans la synagogue locale, était une figure bien connue au sein de la communauté juive de la capitale.

Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

Here's a link to the article in Il Messaggero. It has some more details:

The fact is that this murder has gotten little attention outside Italy. I only know of the short item on guysen news, a French-language site in Israel.