A Singaporean man was arrested for plotting a stabbing spree of Jews outside a shul in Singapore’s central business district, security officials said on Wednesday.
Amirull Ali, a 20-year-old full-time soldier in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF), plotted to murder at least three Jews as they exited shul after Shabbos davening. He planning the murders in frightening detail.
“Ali was very serious and made detailed preparations,” said Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam. “He had a knife prepared for the attack. He carefully studied the human vascular system and decided to target the abdominal area to cause heavy bleeding which would cause a quick death. He practiced stabbing and grip techniques.”
“He made at least two reconnaissance trips to the shul to plan the attack but was careful not to take photos so as not to draw attention. He planned his escape route after his attack and planned to post his manifesto online because he wanted to incite others to perpetrate similar attacks. He also had detailed plans to travel to Gaza to join Hamas and fight against Israel. He had no intentions of returning home as he wanted to die as a martyr there.”
According to a report by Israel’s Channel 12 News, he specifically targeted the Magen Avot shul, the main shul of the Jewish community in Singapore. It is also the oldest Jewish shul in Southeast Asia, built in 1878.
Ali became radicalized online after reading about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and decided to murder Jews “on the assumption that they would have served national service in Israel and hence carried out alleged atrocities against the Palestinians.”
Fortunately, he ultimately gave up on his plan to carry out the attack due to his concern that he wouldn’t become a martyr if he was captured after the attack and sentenced to death.
The Jewish community in Singapore is tiny, numbering only about 2,500 Jews in the city-state of 5.7 million people.
The multi-ethnic Singapore is usually a bastion of peace. A group of Muslim leaders visited the Magen Avot shul on Wednesday in a show of solidarity with the Jewish community.
“We enjoy an amazing relationship with our Muslim friends,” said Chief Rabbi of Singapore Rabbi Mordechai Abergel, as reported by The Straits Times. “We break bread together, we meet for social events. We have regular meetings, we talk to each other regularly. So I really, really don’t think this is something that’s going to affect our relationship, not in the least.”
“Today it was revealed that a serious attack on a synagogue in Singapore was thwarted a month ago,” stated Jewish Agency Chairman Isaac Herzog in response to the report.
“An attempted attack on a school in Marseille was thwarted on Friday. I call on world leaders to understand that anti-Semitism may erupt as the movement restrictions in the world are lifted and to order the security forces in their countries to increase vigilance. The Jewish Agency will continue to work for the security of the communities as much as possible.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)