A COUNCILLOR has said that the community will stand up for people of the Jewish faith following two anti-Semitic incidents.

Tom Hayes is the Oxford city councillor for St Clement’s where recently there were two racially motivated attacks on a centre for Jewish students.

Arsonists started a fire and left racist messages outside the Chabad Student Centre in Cowley Road on Saturday, May 19.

Then, last Wednesday, somebody sparked a chemical scare by tossing what transpired to be talcum powder onto some bins outside the centre and, as in the first incident, leaving an anti-Semitic note.

Police have not linked the two incidents.

Mr Hayes, who is also the city council’s lead on community safety, has offered Oxford’s Jewish community his full support.

After the news of the incident in which a blaze was started outside the centre broke, Mr Hayes said: “Oxford Chabad is a hub of Jewish life in the city and the people of St Clement’s are proud that the student centre has made its home here.

“We deplore every act of anti-Semitism and stand with our Jewish community.”

Police issued an appeal over the arson attack on Friday.

Anybody with information is urged to contact the force on 101.

Investigating officer detective sergeant George Atkinson, of the investigation hub in Oxford, said: “Hate crimes are serious offences and something we will not tolerate in the Thames Valley.

“We are conducting a thorough investigation and have several lines of enquiry which we are exploring.”