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Need for vigilance

Tasmanian MP targeted

'Antisemitism and radical extremism have no place in our free society'

The offending graffiti.
The offending graffiti.

A Tasmanian government minister has declared he “won’t be intimidated by thugs and nor should our community” after vandals scrawled a swastika and initials “SS” on his office last week.

Felix Ellis’ office in Ulverstone, on the north coast of the island, was targeted last Thursday night.

“In the dead of night my office was subject to gutless and cowardly vandalism, presumably from neo-Nazis,” the Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Management, Minister for Skills, Training and Workforce Growth and Minister for Resources wrote on Facebook.

“Antisemitism and radical extremism have no place in our free society, especially in the lead-up to the anniversary of the birth of the state of Israel.

“Those who would use Nazi symbols in an attempt to intimidate elected members of Parliament and the community are truly a disgrace.”

The Member for Braddon noted that members of his own family fled their homeland in Eastern Europe to escape Nazi and communist oppression.

“That these hateful ideologies still hold sway among some in our society shows the need for eternal vigilance,” he said.

“Police continue to monitor and combat online radicalisation in the community and we make no apology for our tough stance against radical extremism.”

Hobart Hebrew Congregation president Jeff Schneider said, “No one should be confronted with these hateful symbols. It is counter to a free and democratic Australian society.

“We thank Minister Ellis for speaking out against antisemitism.”

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