“Anti-Semitic”: Suspicious package at previously targeted kosher restaurant in Amsterdam

Amsterdam police cordon off Amstelveenseweg after a suspicious package was found outside kosher restaurant Ha Carmel, 15 January 2020
Amsterdam police cordon off Amstelveenseweg after a suspicious package was found outside kosher restaurant Ha Carmel, 15 January 2020Politie Amsterdam, @Politie_AdamTwitter

Update, 2:45 p.m., 15 January 2020: More details were added to this story as they became available.

A suspicious package was found on Amstelveenseweg in Amsterdam Zuid on Wednesday morning. The package was found at kosher restaurant Ha Carmel, which was previously the target of vandalism multiple times.

Eventually, police said no explosives were found in the suspicious package. But Jewish organization Federatief Joods NL said on social media that the "crystal clear" motive behind the incident was anti-Semitism. They noted that the restaurant has been targeted four times in two years.

"Action from the mayor and police is badly needed," the organization said.

A forensic team was still collecting trace evidence in the area around Ha Carmel later Wednesday afternoon.

The police were first dispatched to the scene at 10:36 a.m. The area around the restaurant was evacuated and cordoned off in a wide radius while explosive experts from the police investigated, the Amsterdam police said on Twitter.

By 10:57 a.m. the situation was escalated to a Grip 1, which means that a commanding officer from one of the emergency services took command of the entire scene for all responding agencies. 

The Ministry of Defense's explosive removal department was also deployed to the scene. It was not until about 3 p.m. that police said there was no explosive found in the suspicious box.

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