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‘The level of anti-semitism in Europe increased by 1,200 percent,’ says leader of European Jewish group

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Rabbi Menachem Margolin, Chairman of the European Jewish Association (EJA): “Our communities and synagogues like Melilla in Spain, and in Germany are being attacked, antisemitism hate has multiplied over 1000% times from already alarming levels, we are being insulted, assaulted verbally and in many cases physically in the street.'' - writes Yossi Lempkowicz.

In a resolution on the war between Israel and Hamas adopted in Strasbourg, the European Parliament called on the EU to take all appropriate measures to guarantee the safety of citizens of the Jewish faith. In a resolution adopted by 500 votes in favour, 21 against (mainly extreme-left MEPs) and 24 abstentions, the MEPs also strongly condemned the Hamas ‘’despicable terrorist attacks against Israel’’ while expressing serious concern over the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip. They expressed their support to Israel and its people and underlined the need to “eliminate the terrorist organisation Hamas” . They called for the immediate release of all hostages kidnapped by Hamas and recognised Israel’s right to self-defence “as enshrined in and constrained by international law”.

The European Parliament has expressed its concern about the sharp increase of anti-Semitic speeches, rallies and attacks against Jews since the start of the Hamas terror attacks against Israel.

In a resolution on the war between Israel and Hamas adopted Thursday during its plenary session in Strasbourg, the European Parliament called on the EU to take all appropriate measures to guarantee the safety of citizens of the Jewish faith.

“The level of anti-semitism in Europe increased by 1,200 per cent,” said Rabbi Menachem Margolin, Chairman of the European Jewish Association (EJA) who spoke to reports during a briefing in Brussels with Israel’s ambassador to the EU and NATO, Haim Regev. The EJA is one of Europe’s largest Jewish associations representing hundreds of communities across the continent,

“For ten days, two million Jews in Europe have not slept at night. They no longer feel safe. Many receive threats,” said Rabbi Menachem Margolin..

He said European governments need “to wake up.” ”The fact is that the two million Jews in Europe today no longer feel safe on this continent,” he added.

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“This is not about Palestine and Israel, this is not about politics, these are attacks against Jews everywhere in Europe,” he stressed. Synagogues have been attacked in Spain and Germany.

“Our communities and synagogues like Melilla in Spain, and in Germany are being attacked, antisemitism hate has multiplied over 1000% times from already alarming levels, we are being insulted, assaulted verbally and in many cases physically in the street,’’ Margolin said.

In the resolution adopted by 500 votes in favor, 21 against (mainly extreme-left MEPs) and 24 abstentions, the MEPs strongly condemned the Hamas ‘’despicable terrorist attacks against Israel’’ while expressing serious concern over the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip.

They expressed their support to Israel and its people and underlined the need to “eliminate the terrorist organisation Hamas” . They also call for the immediate release of all hostages kidnapped by Hamas and recognise Israel’s right to self-defence “as enshrined in and constrained by international law”

‘’As such, any actions by Israel must strictly comply with international humanitarian law,’’ the resolution stated. The Parliament also stressed that both the attacks by Hamas and the Israeli response risk reinforcing a cycle of violence in the region.

The members of the European Parliament called for a “humanitarian pause” of the fighting and stressed that ‘’attacking civilians and civilian infrastructure, including UN workers, medical workers and journalists, is a serious violation of international law.’’

The resolution strongly condemns Iran’s support to Hamas – 90 % of its budget comes from Tehran- and other terrorist groups in the Gaza strip. MEPs reiterate their call to include the entirety of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Lebanese Hezbollah on the EU list of terrorist groups and demand investigations into the role of Iran and countries such as Qatar and Russia in financing and supporting terrorism in the region.

The MEPs also denounced the rocket attacks from Lebanon and Syria into Israel and call for a de-escalation of tensions in East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

The MEPs expressed ‘’serious concern’’ over the rapidly deteriorating situation in the Gaza Strip, emphasizing the importance of differentiating between the Palestinian people and their legitimate aspirations on the one side, and the Hamas terrorist group on the other . MEPs urge the international community to continue and increase its humanitarian assistance to the civilian population in the area. They call on Egypt and Israel to cooperate with the international community to establish humanitarian corridors to the Gaza Strip.

Israel gave Thursday its green light for humanitarian aid to enter the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing with Egypt.

The delivery of aid to the people of Gaza was announced by US President Joe Biden following his visit to Tel Aviv to reaffirm his solidarity with Israel.”

Israel’s ambassador to EU and NATO said he was satsified with the resolution adopted Thursday; ”There is no doubt that if this war comes out of Gaza it will have implications in Europe,” he said. ”We are not asking Europe for money or military aid, we ask to understand what is happening and–continue to support us,” he told the EU correspondents in Brussels.

He noted the support Israel received from world leaders, including the visits of US President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Parliament President Roberta Metsola came to Israel in the early days after the Hamas massacre. ”We have good contacts with (EU foreign affairs chief) Josep Borrell who spoke with the Israeli Foreign Minister. EU Council President Charles Michel may also come, as any other leader who supports Israel,” the ambassador added.

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