After France and U.K., Germany Reports Increase in anti-Semitic Incidents

The number of anti-Semitic crimes increased from 1,504 in 2017 to 1,646 in 2018, with the number of cases considered violent almost doubling

Members of the Jewish community listen as a Holocaust survivor speaks during a ceremony to commemorate the victims of the Nazi regime, Bundestag, Berlin, January 31, 2019.

As both France and the United Kingdom reeled from an increase in anti-Semitic incidents, neighboring Germany also announced a rise in crimes against the Jewish community in 2018.

The number of anti-Semitic crimes increased from 1,504 in 2017 to 1,646 in 2018, an annual rise of 10 per cent. The number of cases considered violent increased from 37 to 62 over the same period.

The figures were given by the German government in response to a request by the opposition Die Linke (The Left) party, as reported in Wednesday's edition of the Berlin-based Tagesspiegel daily. In the 62 violent anti-Semitic incidents, 43 people were injured.

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Earlier answers from the government also revealed that most of the perpetrators came from extremist right-wing groups. The number of crimes could still increase as the figures have yet to be finalized by the 16 federal states.
"The fight against anti-Semitism at the European level should become a priority of the German European Council presidency in the coming year," Commissioner for Combatting Anti-Semitism, Felix Klein, told dpa.
France reported on Tuesday that there were 541 known cases of anti-Semitic crimes in 2018, up 74 per cent from 2017.

The increase in Germany and France makes it clear that "European strategies to combat anti-Semitism" are needed, said Klein.

Among other things, he called for an EU directive that makes it possible to better combat hatred on the internet.

As an example, he cited the German Network Enforcement Act, which requires internet platforms erase obvious criminal content within 24 hours and within a week in less clear cases.