Merkel condemns attack on two men wearing skullcaps in Germany

Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media caption Footage shows the attack in the Prenzlauer Berg area of Berlin

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Footage shows the attack in the Prenzlauer Berg area of Berlin

Berlin Police are investigating the affair of an attack on two young men wearing Jewish skullcaps, which was filmed by one of the victims and the subsequently posted on Facebook.

The RIAS group that tracks discrimination of Jews said Berlin a year ago had 947 anti-Semitic incidents, including 18 attacks and 23 threats.

Online video footage shows how an Arab-speaking member of the group began lashing out at the 21-year-old Israeli with his belt while repeatedly calling him a "Jahudi", which is the Arab word for Jew.

The two men in their early 20s, wearing skullcaps known as kippas, were accosted at the Helmholtzplatz, a public park in the Prenzlauer Berg district of the capital by three young men, at least one of whom spoke Arabic and has been reported to be Muslim.

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More than 200,000 Jews live in Germany, the BBC reported. "I would be glad if I were wrong", he said.

The victim told Israeli TV that he and his companion had "walked on the street in a normal way - we had not talked to anyone".

The State Protection Office of the German police, which is responsible for politically-motivated offenses, has launched an investigation into the case.

Israel's Kan public broadcaster later found the teen, Adam Armush, and interviewed him near his home. "I'm still in shock". Three people came from over there" - he points down the street - "and started cursing us from over there. "It marks the lives of those affected, and we must not leave them to deal with it alone". "I wanted to give police something to go on".

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Anti-Semitic incidents have been on the rise in Germany. He said that they initially did not pay any attention to them but eventually his friend asked them to stop. "Then they got angry, one of them ran to me".

Merkel created a new position of commissioner to fight anti-Semitism under her new coalition government sworn in last month. He urged policymakers and civil society to unite in finding an adequate response to a growing number of anti-Semitic incidents, particularly pronounced in circles of young Muslim males.

"It was an experience for me to wear the kippa yesterday and go out", Adam said, adding that out of fifty people on the street at the time, only one woman had volunteered help.

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