Members of the local Breslov community in Uman estimated that the
attackers were looking to provoke local Jews and "settle the score" with
them, after a Jewish man stabbed and lightly injured a local resident
during Rosh Hashana. Hundreds of Breslovers rioted and attacked police in an attempt to stop the arrest of the Jewish man.
Israeli murdered in Uman
Young Jewish man visiting Rabbi Nachman of Breslov's grave on 200th anniversary of Rabbi's passing stabbed to death by local Ukrainian. Brother of victim lightly injured in incident
Kobi Nachshoni • Ynet
A 19-year-old Breslov man was stabbed to death early Sunday morning in the town of Uman, Ukraine, and his brother was lightly injured in a brawl between several local residents.
The murder dumbfounded Breslov community members in Israel and around the world, and Ukraine's chief Rabbi expressed fear that local authorities might attempt to whitewash the grave incident.
On Sunday – the fourth day of Sukkot – Uman marked the 200th anniversary to the passing of Rabbi Nachman from Breslov, who is buried in the town.
The two brothers flew to the Ukraine especially to visit the Rabbi's grave, who according to tradition promised to protect his followers. The victim recently got engaged, and was about to get married in two months.
According to eyewitnesses, close to 1 am Sunday, a few locals hurled stones and smashed the windshield of a car owned by Jews, which was parked on one of the central streets in town.
The two brothers, from a well known family in Breslov, heard the clamor and rushed down from their house, only to discover their vehicle has been damaged.
One of the brothers started chasing the perpetrators, and when he caught up with one of them, the man turned around and stabbed him in his chest with a knife. The young man collapsed and died in the hospital shortly after. His brother, who came to his help, was lightly injured in a brawl that took place at the scene.
Members of the local Breslov community in Uman estimated that the attackers were looking to provoke local Jews and "settle the score" with them, after a Jewish man stabbed and lightly injured a local resident during Rosh Hashana.
According to local media, Jewish worshipers blocked the Ukrainian police forces that arrived at the scene, and tried to prevent the arrest of the Jewish suspect. The police officers then used crowd dispersal means and took the man into custody.
Ukraine's Chief Rabbi Moshe Asman and the director of the Jewish community Ya'acov Zilberman, who also heads ZAKA in the Ukraine, were both making their way from the capital of Kiev to the hospital in Uman in order to take care of the body.
Rabbi Asman told Ynet that he will request to closely follow the investigation into the murder, and has even contacted the police and law authorities on the matter.
"There were incidents in the past that the police tried to cover up," he explained, "That's why it is important that we are here and keep on top of things."
Meanwhile, ZAKA members were trying to prevent an autopsy on the body, so that it can be quickly transferred back to Israel.
Rabbi Asman is one of what was once two Chabad 'chief rabbis.' The actual Chief Rabbi of Ukraine is Yaakov Bleich, a Stoliner hasid who has served in that capacity for many years, beginning long before Asman or his even newer Chabad rival arrived in Ukraine.
Rabbi Bleich's aunt and uncle are leading Chabad emissaries, and many of his first cousins are, as well.
That did not stop Chabad from declaring their own men chief rabbi over him.
Here is the Ha'aretz report, which has the name of the victim:
Haredi pilgrim stabbed to death at rabbi's tomb in Ukraine
On Saturday and Sunday, the Bratslav Hasidic community commemorates the death of Rabbi Nachman of Uman 200 years ago.
By Haaretz Service
A young ultra-Orthodox Israeli was stabbed to death early Sunday while on a traditional pilgrimage to visit the tomb of Rabbi Nachman in Uman, Ukraine.
On Saturday and Sunday, the Bratslav Hasidic community commemorates the death of the renowned rabbi 200 years ago.
Shmuel Tobol, a 19-year old member of the Bratslav Hasidic sect was apparently stabbed during a fight with local Ukrainians. His brother was also lightly injured during the fight.
According to reports on the incident in Haredi newspapers, several Ukrainian youth arrived at the Tobol's house and began throwing rocks at the family's car. Shmuel and his brother went down to confront the rock throwers, which led to the subsequent fight during which Shmuel was killed.
Rabbi Nachman died of tuberculosis at age 38 in Uman surrounded only by a small handful of followers; 200 years later, thousands of newly religious and ultra-Orthodox Jews are influenced by his teachings.