Australian state set to ban public display of swastikas

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Australian state set to ban public display of swastikas

Move will make Victoria the first part of the country to ban swastikas and other Nazi symbols

Michael Daventry is Jewish News’s foreign and broadcast editor

Australia's Nine Network last year exposed a neo-Nazi who flew a swastika outside their home in the rural Victoria town of Beulah
Australia's Nine Network last year exposed a neo-Nazi who flew a swastika outside their home in the rural Victoria town of Beulah

An Australian Jewish leader said he shed “tears of joy” after a state government announced plans to ban the swastika and other Nazi symbols.

The government in Victoria has proposed banning the public display of hate symbols except for educational or historical purposes.

It would be part of a new anti-vilification law that also covers disability, sexual orientation and gender identity.

The proposals, which come amid a rise in reports of far-rogjt extremist activity in Victoria, appear certain to become law after winning the support of opposition parties in state parliament.

Jaclyn Symes, Victoria’s attorney-general, said work was underway to determine how the ban would be applied and enforced.

She told the Australian broadcaster ABC: “There’s certainly very little opposition to banning the Nazi symbol in the form of the swastika and what it stands for and how it is used,” Ms Symes said.

“To me, the most important people to hear from are Victorians who unfortunately have been subjected to this abhorrent behaviour and how they think us as a state should respond and prevent it.”

Dvir Abramovich of the Anti-Defamation Commission said he would be “lying if I didn’t admit to shedding tears of joy”.

He added: “This announcement is a resounding triumph for the victims of the Holocaust, the survivors and our brave diggers who died to vanquish the evil Third Reich regime, and a defeat of homegrown neo-Nazis who seek to keep Hitler’s legacy alive.”

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...


Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.


There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.


In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.


Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more: