Orthodox Jewish sect nixes NYC dinner celebrating Nazi escape over COVID-19 backlash

Under fire for largely ignoring New York coronavirus restrictions, the ultra-Orthodox Jewish sect that organized an illegal wedding in Brooklyn said Friday it is canceling its yearly celebration that commemorates the escape of a key religious leader from a Nazi death camp.

The cancellation of the annual Chof Aleph Kislev event comes just days after the Satmar faction was roundly criticized for organizing the clandestine nuptials for the grandson of Grand Rabbi Aaron Teitelbaum, which brought thousands of maskless revelers to a South Williamsburg synagogue.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the safety measures in place to stave off the rising number of cases, the leaders of the Satmar community made the difficult decision to cancel the celebratory dinner that sees thousands of Chassidim in attendance each year,” said organizers in an English-language statement released in the name of Satmar Board chairman, Chesky Berkowitz.

“The Satmar community is grateful to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio and all frontline workers for their tireless efforts in combating the terrible effects of the pandemic,” the statement adds. “They remain in the hearts and prayers of all its Chassidic constituents.”

Organizers wrote in a Hebrew flyer obtained by The Post that the bash — which had been set for nightfall on Dec. 6 — will not take place, but it asked that members of the community still “respond generously” when solicited for donations. It adds that organizers plan to bring back the dinner celebration after coronavirus pandemic restrictions are lifted.

The flyer was put out by the Central United Talmudical Academy, which is controlled by followers of Aaron Teitelbaum.


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