Antisemitic incidents in France

9 Jun 2010 by CST

The  fallout from the Gaza flotilla affair has thankfully not, as yet, seen a large rise in antisemitic incidents in Britain, as happened during last year's Gaza conflict. While there have been some incidents reported to CST that seem to have been triggered by reactions to the flotilla affair, none have been of the most serious variety, such as violent assaults or damage to Jewish buildings.

This is not the case, however, in France, as the Jewish Telegraph Agency reports:

PARIS (JTA) – Several anti-Semitic acts have been reported in France since Israel’s interception of a Gaza-bound flotilla.

Between May 31 and June 8, 18 anti-Semitic acts including violence against individuals, the defacing of Jewish institutions, and throwing Molotov cocktails at and threats to bomb a synagogue were reported to the Jewish Community Protection Service, according to a report issued by the group. The group works in cooperation with France’s Interior Ministry.

In some instances, such as in the southern town of Grenoble, where a Jewish school was attacked with stones and its doors rammed, the incidents took place immediately following protest marches against Israel’s early-morning raid of a Gaza-bound flotilla on May 31.

One crowd of 700 anti-Israel protesters in Strasbourg “wanted to head toward the synagogue, with cries of ‘Death to Israel’ and ‘Israel Assassins,’ ” according to the report.

The police prevented the mob from reaching the synagogue in the city, which closely borders Germany.

In another case, a man demanded to know which passengers on a Paris suburban subway were Jewish, and one Jewish male victim was punched twice in the temple, according to the report.

The assailant had said, “I don’t like Jews, and I’m going to hit you," adding later, "did you see what your cousins did in Gaza?”


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“Since 2003, CST has been a stalwart supporter of ODIHR in its efforts to effectively monitor antisemitic hate crime in the OSCE Region. With its rigorous methodology and innovative partnerships with the British police, it is viewed by many as representing the gold standard for NGO responses to all forms of hate crime. I wish CST all success in its exciting new phase of work.”

Michael Georg Link
OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights