(JTA) – Passengers aboard a metro train in Paris stopped four Arab men from pursuing a Jewish man they were harassing over his faith, the victim said.

The incident on the night of Feb. 1 unfolded as the train approached the Jaures station in northeast Paris, the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Anti-Semitism, or BNVCA, reported  Feb 2.

The four men asked a Jewish man wearing a yarmulke for a cigarette, said the report based on the man’s testimony. When he said he didn’t have one, one of the men told him: “You Jews have enough money to buy some.”

The Arab men then cornered the man against the wall of the train car, but he escaped. The men pursued him but were blocked by other passengers.

Jews make up less than one percent of the French population, were they were targets of most of the documented racist hate crimes 2019. The French Interior Ministry published the data last month in a report that counted 687 anti-Semitic incidents last year out of a total of 1,142 racist hate crimes.

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