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Sukkah vandalized in UES park; Police search for suspects

October 01, 2018 - 6:57 am

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Jewish residents of New York City will rally Monday night in solidarity after a religious structure part of a major holiday was vandalized this weekend.

Thousands are expected to gather in front of the Chabad House on the Upper East Side beginning at 8 p.m. as police continue to search for the suspect who spray painted “Free Gaza” on a Sukkah placed in Carl Schurz Park.

“We were just horrified that somebody spray painted the Sukkah,” Rabbi Ben Tzion Krasnianski said. “That was a very vicious attack, but you know, police responded beautifully – they’re treating it as a hate crime.”

The temporary place of worship was resurrected last week as Jews prepared for Sukkot, a holiday that kicks off the state of the Jewish New Year.

On Sunday morning, Krasnianski said his office was flooded with calls from the community to tell him about the vandalism.

Krasnianski then organized the rally for Monday evening and noted that the Jewish community would respond “by strengthening deepening and intensifying the light and positivity.”

By Monday morning, the community had painted over the vandalism and placed messages of peace and unity on the structure.

The NYPD said there are no suspects yet. Mayor Bill de Blasio also responded to the attack calling it an “attack on our city’s values.”