A garage owner in Antwerp announced that he will no longer welcome because he finds Israel’s position on Russia “unacceptable.”
The garage owner, Ludo Eyckmans, of Hoevenen near Antwerp in the Flemish region, had sent a letter on 21 March to several Jewish organisations and to the media, including a copy to the public broadcaster.
“Since today, our Jewish customers are no longer welcome for maintenance of their vehicles or solving electronic problems,” Eyckmans wrote.
The Antwerp-based Forum of Jewish Organisations (FJO) had tried for several weeks, in vain, to enter into dialogue with the garage owner. They explained to him that Jews in our country have Belgian, and not Israeli, nationality, and that there is an essential difference between a individual Jews and Israel
In spite of this, Eyckmans repeatedly refuse to withdraw his letter, according to spokesman Hans Knoop. The Jewish organisation therefore decided to lodge a complaint against the man with the public prosecutor’s office.
Belgian MP Michael Freilich, who follows the issue of antisemitism for the N-VA party argued that discriminating on the basis of belief and origin is clearly punishable. “This is disgusting discrimination and it is based on fake news. I hope this will not remain without consequences. As a society, we cannot tolerate this”.