The appointment of Rasela Mizrahi as interim Labour and Welfare Minister caused an outpouring of anti-Semitic hate speech against this member of a distinguished Sephardic family from Macedonia from leftist activists and officials from the ruling SDSM party. Mizrahi was called a “Jew who collaborates with Nazis” and told to put on the star of David by a Muslim spokeswoman appointed by the previous Labour and Minister Mila Carovska.

After the campaign of hate against Mizrahi was condemned by a large number of public speakers, today SDSM party leader Zoran Zaev also issued a statement, in which he condemned but did not apologize the anti-Semitism coming from his party.

I call on the activists and supporters of all political parties, including my own SDSM, and on all officials to be more responsible in their public communication and to avoid and reject speech that may contain insults or slanders. SDSM is against any hate speech, racism and xenophobia in our country. We have strongly condemned and will condemn such speech no matter where it comes from. That, of course, goes for speech that could in a way be anti-Semitic or could be seen as such, Zaev wrote in a social media message.

The attacks on Rasela Mizrahi, who is the first Jewish member of the Macedonian Government, began with a fake news report spread by outlets associated by SDSM that she allegedly placed a party flag in her office. This shockingly led to calls from the SDSM activists to have the Minister put on the star of David.

The Mizrahi family is one of the very few surviving members of the once thriving Sephardic Jewish community in Macedonia. The Jews communities from Skopje, Bitola, Stip and other Macedonian cities were nearly entirely annihilated in the Holocaust.