Activist attacked in Slovakia

A Swedish activist of Middle Eastern origin was assaulted in Slovakia. However, the case is not isolated: he was harassed in his native Sweden as well.

Ria Gehrerová
Ria Gehrerová Denník N, Slovakia
Source: Denník N
Activist attacked in Slovakia - NewsMavens
Palestinian Flag. Photo: Makbula Nassar/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Why this story matters:

What would happen if a Slovak saw a bearded man walking on the road? Assume he was a refugee and attack him? That's what happened last Friday near the Czech-Slovak border. The victim, however, was not a refugee, but Benjamin Ladraa, a Swedish activist of Middle Eastern origin. A Slovak man assaulted him shouting: "This is Europe, go home!"

At the time of the attack, Ladraa was pushing a stroller and carrying a Palestinian flag. He was walking from Sweden to Palestine to draw attention to human rights violations in Palestine.

It may be tempting to assume this xenophobic incident is for Slovakia alone to deal with. But even in his native Sweden, two men shouted at him, telling him to leave "their" territory. 

Read more details about Slovak reactions to the incident in the Denník N article below.

Details from the story:

  • Swedish activist and student Benjamin Ladraa wanted to raise awareness of human rights violations in Palestine
  • He was attacked near the village Veľké Leváre on Friday 10 November 2017.
  • A Slovak man tried to break the Palestinian flag that Ladraa was carrying.
  • Ladraa was planning to give lectures on Palestinian human rights violations in Bratislava.
  • Slovak policemen checked his ID and warned it was not a good idea to walk around with a Palestinian flag. He's been the subject of regular police checks in various countries.
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