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Jewish Center In Central Russia Vandalized Again

BARNAUL -- Anti-Semitic pictures and slogans have been found on the walls of a building housing the Jewish center in the central Russian city of Barnaul, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

The incident marked the second time this week that such drawings and slogans had been scrawled on the center's wall.

Olga Chesnokova, deputy head of the Russian Investigative Committee's branch in Altai Krai, told RFE/RL that experts will determine whether the stenciled paintings and texts are legally punishable as extremism.

Police also fingerprinted the members of the Jewish center to help identify other fingerprints on the walls.

It was the second time this week such drawings and slogans were painted on the center's walls.

Isroel Noah Kamenetsky, the chief rabbi of Altai Krai and Barnaul, attributed an "aggressive attitude" toward the Jewish community to distorted historical facts taught in Russian secondary schools. He said school textbooks frequently depict Jews as being responsible for "major problems."

Barnaul, an industrial center in Altai Krai, has a population of some 650,000 people.

The first incident took place on October 7.