Jan. 29 (UPI) — A synagogue was left undamaged after a Molotov cocktail was thrown toward the temple in New Jersey on Sunday morning, police said.
A man wearing a ski mask threw the explosive at the front door of the Temple Ner Tamid around 3:19 a.m. before fleeing the scene, the Bloomfield Police Department said in a news release.
Detectives with the police department along with agents from the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were notified of the incident.
Investigators believe that the suspect is a white male and have released a surveillance photo of him.
Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin said in a statement that the incident is being investigated as a bias incident and that his office is working with law enforcement to find the arson suspect.
Platkin added that his office is aware of a second incident that happened on Saturday in Monmouth County, where members of a church were attacked.
That incident is also being investigated as a bias incident, Platkin said.
“We are cognizant of the fact that these attacks have occurred while violence continues to erupt in Israel, and while our own nation reckons with violence at home,” Platkin said.
“I want to reassure all New Jerseyans — especially our friends and neighbors of the Black community and the Jewish faith — that law enforcement continues to take the appropriate steps to increase our presence our sensitive places so that everyone in our state can worship, love and live without fear of violence or threat.”
Bloomfield Mayor Michael Venezia said in a statement that the attack on the synagogue “did not work” and said that hate and antisemitism “will not be tolerated.”
Pope Francis on Sunday decried a recent surge in violence between Israel and Palestine while calling for peace in the Holy Land.
Israeli police on Sunday sealed off the home of a Palestinian man who is alleged to have killed seven people and wounded three others during a shooting outside of a synagogue in the Neve Yaakov area of East Jerusalem on Friday.
The news also came after a 13-year-old Palestinian boy was shot and wounded by armed civilians and taken into custody after he allegedly opened fire on civilians in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan on Saturday.