German Hotel Launches Investigation After Jewish Singer Was Allegedly Denied Service

A hotel in the city of Leipzig in eastern Germany has launched an investigation after Jewish singer Gil Ofarim alleged that employees refused him service for visibly wearing a Star of David necklace.

In a video posted on social media on Oct. 5, Ofarim said that he attempted to check in to Hotel Westin but the employees allowed others to skip him in line. Then, an employee told him to “put your star away.”

“Once you put it away, then you can check in,” the employee repeated the call to Ofarim, as claimed by the singer.

Andreas Hachmeister, the general manager of the hotel, told CNN in an email that they were taking it “very seriously.”

“Our goal is to integrate, support, and respect all our guests and employees no matter which religion they believe in. The employees concerned have been suspended, and we will clarify the issue without compromises. We are a cosmopolitan, international hotel and reject all kind of discrimination,” Hachmeister said.

Liepzig police told media company Deutsche Welle that they are currently processing the incident.

“We have secured the video and are preparing to send it to prosecutors for consideration,” Police Spokesperson Theresa Leverenz said.

Central Council of Jews President Josef Schuster said on Twitter that “the anti-Semitic hostility against Gil Ofarim is terrifying.”

The incident prompted about 600 protesters, to gather in front of the hotel to demonstrate against anti-Semitism, according to local newspaper Leipziger Zeitung.

Some hotel employees also participated in the protest to show solidarity.


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