During the debate, Dawid Lewicki, a candidate for the Confederation political alliance, put a Jewish scullcap, called a kippah in front of a candidate from the ruling Law and Justice party and said, “This is the symbol of Law and Justice. They kneel before the Jews, they sell the country for $300 billion,” the Polish press reported.
But the implicated Law and Justice candidate, Anne Krupka, threw the skullcap off the table.
Later, Konrad Berkowicz, another Confederation official, picked up the kippah and held it over the head of Krupka as she was speaking.
Poland’s Ambassador to Israel Marek Magierowski expressed his outrage in a tweet on Sunday, calling unacceptable “all expressions of racially motivated hatred”
Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said the gestures were not worthy of comment, saying: “This a fringe racist party that isn’t even worthy of responding to.”
Konrad Berkowicz z Konfederacji, a pani z Prawa i Sprawiedliwości.
Przyszli koalicjanci. 😂😀
Mówiłem, że koalicja to wrzutka PiSu, żeby suweren uwierzyl w koalicje i glosowal na PiS. pic.twitter.com/X3FFAQch4O
— Ken (@KenLewak) May 19, 2019
The debate over Holocaust restitution is raging across the country in election debates ahead of EU vote as well as a parliamentary ballot later this year. The debate centres on the 2018 law signed by US President Donald Trump for the restoration of Jewish property. Poland’s ruling party considers the matter closed however.
When a 65-year-old Israeli man spit on the Polish ambassador in Tel Aviv, Warsaw said appeared to be an “anti-Polish act of hatred”.
Polish leaders have recently canceled a visit by Israeli officials, while Polish nationalists marched in Warsaw carrying signs that described Jews as “Holocaust hyenas”. Most Poles oppose the law, arguing that paying compensation would ruin Poland’s economy.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told Polish media that it was Poles instead who deserved compensation for World War II. At a Saturday campaign rally in Lodz, Morawiecki the PiS “would not consent” to spurious claims of Holocaust restitution, telling his audience that the government “will defend Poland”.
Morawiecki added that paying restitution “violates international law and would also be a posthumous victory for Hitler, which is why we will never allow it”. Warsaw passed a law last year that made it illegal to accuse the Polish nation or state of complicity in Nazi German war crimes.
The move sparked an outcry from Israel, forcing Warsaw to amend the law to remove the possibility of fines or a prison sentence, Times of Israel reported.
In February, Foreign Minister Israel Katz quoted late Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Shamir saying “Poles suckle anti-Semitism with their mothers’ milk”. In April, the World Jewish Congress condemned a Polish town, after reports that residents had burned in effigy in a revival of an old Easter tradition, “made to look like a stereotypical Jew”.
Previously, a restitution package was discussed by the Polish government, but it was suspended in 2011 as the country grappled with an economic downturn.