Watch above: Residents in Thornhill are concerned after a bus shelter was defaced with anti-Semitic graffiti. Catherine McDonald reports.
TORONTO – York Regional Police are investigating after anti-Semitic graffiti was spray painted on a bus shelter in Thornhill.
The incident happened on Atkinson Avenue near Bathurst Street and a photo was sent to Global News by a viewer.
Police believe the vandalism occurred sometime between midnight and 7 a.m. on Wednesday.
Hate crime investigators have been assigned to the case.
It is the second time this week that hateful messages have been found in the community north of Toronto.
Police responded to a call at the Ja’ffari Community Centre at 9000 Bathurst Street near Rutherford Road on Sunday night regarding anti-Muslim messages.
Among the words scrawled onto the sidewalk were “Arab go home” and vulgarities referencing the ongoing Gaza-Israel conflict.
BELOW: Footage of the graffiti spray painted on a Thornhill bus shelter (WARNING – video contains offensive language which may not be suitable for all viewers)
The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs condemned the hateful comments in a statement.
“We are particularly concerned about a growing trend since the conflict began in the Middle East toward the metamorphosis of anti-Israel commentary into outright expressions of anti-Semitism,” Howard English, a spokesperson for the centre said. “One of the things Canadians don’t want is the importation of conflicts to our country.”
The Islamic Shia Ithna Asheri Jamaat of Toronto, which runs the Islamic centre, said it was “disturbed” by the incident.
Police say the hate crime unit has taken over the case but there’s no word yet on suspects. Police would not say whether the two incidents were related.
Authorities are urging anyone with information about either events to call police.