Alleged Nazi salute stunt at cinema sparks police probe

March 12, 2024 by AAP
Read on for article

Police are investigating after Nazi salutes were allegedly performed and racial slurs yelled by a group of people during the screening of a Holocaust movie.

The scene reportedly unfolded at Cinema Nova in Carlton on Saturday night as moviegoers watched Zone of Interest, which is set at Auschwitz concentration camp.

A Victoria Police spokeswoman said it “understands incidents of anti-Semitism can leave communities feeling targeted, threatened, and vulnerable” and should not be tolerated.

“It is believed a group of patrons performed a Nazi salute and called out a racial slur at a cinema on Lygon Street about 9.15pm,” she said.

“The exact circumstances surrounding the incident are yet to be determined and the investigation is ongoing.”

She urged witnesses or anyone with vision or information relating to the incident to contact Crime Stoppers.

Security escorted the group out of the venue before staff reported the incident to police.

Performing a Nazi salute has been illegal in Victoria since 2023.

Peter Wertheim, co-CEO of The Executive Council of Australian Jewry, told J-Wire: “If the police investigation bears out the reported facts, then this incident will be a test of both Federal and Victorian State laws that were enacted last year to outlaw the public performance of the Nazi salute.

If these laws are to be more than mere window-dressing, then they need to be used. That means that if a group of neo-Nazis has pulled a stunt like this in a cinema, charges need to be laid promptly and prosecutions need to be pursued with the utmost vigour of the law.   Neo-Nazis and other extremist groups will be watching carefully to see what, if anything, they can get away with.  The Jewish community will be watching too and will not be silent.”

Zeddy Lawrence is the executive director ov Zionism Victoria. He said: “We expect the law to be enforced and will be most distressed if the appropriate course of action is not taken.

The community is increasingly concerned – and indeed alarmed – that perpetrators of incitement and
antisemitism are being given carte blanche to spread hate and discord.

If the authorities want to restore our faith in multicultural Victoria, they need to take urgent action to stem the tide of aggression and invective confronting us.”

Cinema Nova has been contacted for comment.

Anyone found guilty of performing a Nazi salute in Victoria could face fines of more than $23,000 or 12 months in prison.

AAP with J-Wire

Speak Your Mind

Comments received without a full name will not be considered
Email addresses are NEVER published! All comments are moderated. J-Wire will publish considered comments by people who provide a real name and email address. Comments that are abusive, rude, defamatory or which contain offensive language will not be published

Got something to say about this?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.