The vandalism that took place on Sunday against the Turku Synagogue did not come as a surprise, said Harry Serlo, a spokesperson of the Jewish Community of Turku.
“What happened is a general trend [in Finland] and should be seen in such a light,” he said. “I don’t like to talk just about anti-Semitism but how all minorities are targets of such hatred [these days].”
Serlo said he was especially happy with President Sauli Niinistö’s reaction and condemnation of what occurred.
The spokesperson of the Jewish Community of Turku said that the best way to counter anti-Semitism and other forms of hatred against minorities is not only political leadership but respect for diversity, which should be taught at an early stage at schools.
“This is a long process [to root out hatred] and will take a very long time before matters start to change for the better,” he said.
The Turku Synagogue was built in 1912 and is one of two synagogues in Finland today. The size of the Jewish community of Finland numbers over a thousand members.