WJC responds to rise in antisemitism in Germany

14 Feb 2019
14 Feb 2019 Facebook Twitter Email Print

NEW YORK – World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder has expressed great concern after the German government revealed a sharp rise of 10 percent in antisemitic incidents in the country in 2018.

“The World Jewish Congress stands with our affiliate, the Central Council of Jews in Germany, in calling for concrete action by the government, as well as by police and judicial authorities, in cracking down on antisemitic acts and rhetoric across the country,” Lauder said.

“The German government, under the leadership of Chancellor Angela Merkel, has shown encouraging steps in establishing a zero-tolerance policy against antisemitism, but it has become extraordinarily evident that we need more than just words of determination to this regard. Combating antisemitism demands its own specific solutions and responses, and it requires the input and dedication of all levels of authority and society at large,” Lauder added.

“An alarming pattern of antisemitism is spreading across Europe, from France to Germany to Sweden and elsewhere on the continent. We must all work together to not only prevent such incidents and penalize the perpetrators, but also to instill deep education and awareness among youth about the horrors and dangers of antisemitism and xenophobia,” Lauder said.

“A recent poll by the European Union’s Agency for Fundamental Rights found that 89 percent of Jews in Europe believe that antisemitism is on the rise, and more than one-third have considering emigrating because of that. Just as concerning, a Eurobarometer survey released after that found that four out 10 European non-Jews do not believe that antisemitism is a problem,” Lauder said. “These numbers speak for themselves. We cannot expect these incidents to disappear until we raise awareness among non-Jews of the very real and present threats their Jewish neighbors. Antisemitism is not, and cannot remain, just a Jewish problem. This is an issue that affects all Europeans, and Western society as a whole.”