The Jewish man who was the victim of two antisemtic incidents in one hour in central London has been left “very shaken”, his brother has revealed.
Asking not to be named himself, the brother said Yosef had been seated on the 113 bus when he was targeted because of the way he looked.
“The bus incident happened when the suspect noticed my brother. There was no prior communication before they lashed out [at him],” he told the Press Association news agency.
“It wasn’t just a mere verbal assault. He was very close to being physically attacked by this vicious assailant.”
Yosef’s brother said the passenger leaned in close to his face and tried to punch him but Yosef stopped him.
“He was shouting angrily: ‘I’ll give you an uppercut, I’ll give you an uppercut’,” he said.
Yosef, who wears a kippah, then managed to “de-escalate” the situation by talking to the passenger, but still was faced with “ugly racist remarks and death threats”, the brother added.
The incident ended after the bus driver called the police, he said.
Asked how he felt about what Yosef had experienced, the brother said: “I was upset since this is an experience I’ve myself had many times as a kid.
“Not necessarily death threats like this but lots of verbal assaults, things thrown from cars.
“I’m not religious like my brother so I don’t look obviously Jewish to be a target this way.
“It’s the fact that antisemites are willing to do this when knowing there is CCTV means we’ve reached the level where they’re not concerned about repercussions.”
Yosef was “verbally assaulted” while on a bus in Oxford Street and then while at an underground station.
His brother said Yosef was targeted because he looked “obviously Jewish” and that the offenders “were not concerned about the repercussions”.
The Met Police and British Transport Police are investigating.
Yosef was first abused while sitting on a bus at 23:40 BST on Saturday by a black man wearing a red, white and navy blue T-shirt and shorts and red trainers. He shouted “free Palestine” as he got off the bus.
Once Yosef left the bus and was walking down an escalator at Oxford Circus Tube station, he was subjected to “antisemitic behaviour” by a white man, who was wearing jeans, a black T-shirt and a grey jumper tied around his shoulders.
No arrests have been made and inquiries are continuing.
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