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Protesters Gather Outside Leipzig Hotel as Singer Alleges Antisemitism

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Hundreds of protesters gathered outside a luxury hotel in Leipzig, Germany, on October 5, after a singer alleged antisemitic treatment there from staff, local media reported.

German singer Gil Ofarim said in a video published on social media that he was refused service at the Westin Hotel due to a Star of David necklace, Deutsche Welle reported.

In the video, filmed outside the hotel, Ofarim said two employees told him to remove the necklace. “If I put it away, then I can check in,” he said.

The hotel placed two employees on leave following the allegation, a spokeswoman told Der Spiegel. Police were investigating the incident, the magazine reported.

An employee at the hotel who described events as “significantly different from the statements made by the musician,” filed a “criminal complaint for defamation” against Ofarim, Der Spiegel reported citing a police spokesman.

Hotel staff posed in front of the hotel with a banner that featured “Israeli flags and the Islamic crescent moon and star,” Deutsche Welle reported. An Instagram account, @thewestinleipzig, shared a photograph of the group holding the banner.

Germany’s Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency shared Ofarim’s video, and wrote, “A quick response from the hotel is long overdue. From our point of view, this cannot remain without consequences.”

This footage was published on Twitter by @MoskvaExpat, and shows a crowd of protesters gathered outside the hotel. The banner featuring Israeli flags, crescents, and stars can also be seen in the footage.

Storyful has contacted Marriott International, owner of the Westin chain, for comment. Credit: @MoskvaExpat via Storyful

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