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Jewish U of M student finds Nazi messages scrawled in his dorm room

The incident has drawn widespread condemnation from students and Jewish groups.
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A Jewish student at the University of Minnesota returned to his dorm room to find someone had daubed Nazi imagery on his whiteboard.

Freshman Avi Shaver posted a picture of the message "Nazis rule" that was left in his dorm room on Facebook Thursday, which was accompanied by a Swastika and a picture of a concentration camp.

His post that has been shared more than 600 times and prompted outrage among students and Jewish groups.

Shaver asks three questions of the perpetrator, not least how they managed to get into his room and how they knew that he was Jewish.

"Most importantly, why? Why would you do this? Do you feel empowered doing this? What benefit do you gain by making a person feel afraid?," he concluded. "Not cool."

The graffiti has been condemned by the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and North Dakota, which in a statement said it's not the first time an incident like this has been reported on campus this year.

Executive director Steve Huengs said: "Perpetrators of these types of incidents are intent on spreading a message of hate and challenging the openness and respectful atmosphere of our community.

"Collectively, we reject these chilling acts and the hate they represent. The recent spike in hate incidents both nationally and locally directed against Jews and other minorities is deeply disturbing."

WCCO reports that it is the seventh anti-Semitic incident reported at the university since December, although it is the first that specifically targeted someone.

The previous anti-Semitic incidents have include graffiti involving swastikas, neo-Nazi propaganda and other anti-Semitic messages, according to the Star Tribune.

The university's Bias Response and Referral Network has reached out to Shaver and his family to offer support, the newspaper notes.

Jewish organizations have been concerned by an apparent a surge in anti-Semitism during 2016, according to Fortune.

The Anti-Defamation League reports they have been rising on college campuses too, with its figures for 2015 finding 90 incidents were reported, a 50 percent rise on the 60 reported in 2014.

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