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Author Wiesel accosted, dragged from elevator

San Francisco police confirm that well-known Jewish scholar and author of books about the Holocaust Elie Wiesel was accosted and dragged out of an elevator last week by an apparent Holocaust denier who wanted to grill Wiesel about his writings.
After Elie Wiesel, author of the Holocaust memoir “Night,” was accosted in San Francisco on Feb. 1, a writer who posted to a Web site took credit for the attack and called the book almost entirely fictitious.Haraz Ghanbari / AP
/ Source: The Associated Press

Nobel laureate and Holocaust scholar Elie Wiesel was dragged from an elevator and roughed up during a peace conference at a San Francisco hotel last week, police said Friday. The author was not injured.

The assailant approached Wiesel in an elevator Feb. 1 at the Argent Hotel and requested an interview, police Sgt. Neville Gittens said.

When Wiesel consented to talk in the hotel’s lobby, the man insisted it be done in a hotel room and dragged the 78-year-old off the elevator on the sixth floor, Gittens said.

The assailant fled after Wiesel screamed, and Wiesel went to the lobby and called police. Gittens said police are investigating the incident as a crime.

In a posting on a Web site, a writer is taking credit for the attack, explaining that he wanted to quiz the Nobel Peace prize winner about his Holocaust memoir, "Night," which the posting calls almost entirely fictitious.

Wiesel couldn’t be immediately reached for comment at Boston University, where he teaches, or through his institute in New York.

Wiesel, who survived the Nazi death camps at Auschwitz and Buchenwald during World War II, has worked for human rights in many parts of the world and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986.