SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTRE - EUROPE
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Wiesenthal Centre to Interior Ministers of France, United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany, Sweden, Denmark and Greece: "The Terror of Gaza Must Not Be Transplanted to Your Cities, and Your Jewish Communities Must Be Defended from Further Assaults"
Paris, 7 January 2009
In letters to the Interior Ministers of France, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany, Sweden, Denmark and Greece, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre's Director for International Relations, Dr Shimon Samuels, expressed "grave concern at the increasingly threatening situation for Jewish communities in your country and across Europe. Pro-Hamas demonstrations are encouraging extremists to take direct action against the nearest communal institutions, synagogues and Jewish passersby."
The letter continued, "The banners and invective of demonstrators are degenerating to calls for violence against your Jewish citizens. Indeed, those calls reflect such incitement 'to murder Jewish children worldwide' from Hamas senior officials, disseminated in Arabic and European translations on Jihadist websites and Middle East satellite television."
Samuels stressed that "European Muslim leaders must condemn such voices and admit that Hamas and its allies endanger their own youth, by sowing among them not only hate for Jews, but a revulsion for Western values and for their own moderates."
The letter noted, "Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak has advised European diplomats that 'Hamas must not be allowed to win this war' for the sake of peace in the region and for Europe's own wellbeing", adding, "this means, Mr/Madam Minister, that the terror of Gaza must not be allowed to be transplanted to your cities."
The Centre called on each Minister "to monitor and prosecute all calls for, and acts of, antisemitic violence while, simultaneously, reinforcing security in Jewish neighbourhoods and around community institutions."
"Calls for violence, and assaults, so far in Metz, Toulon, Auber, the Paris and London suburbs, Brussels and Antwerp, Berlin and Frankfurt, Stockholm, Odense, and on the Volos synagogue in Greece, must be treated as warnings and not be permitted by your respective governments to become precedents.
Your Jewish communities must be defended from further assaults," concluded Samuels.
For further information, please contact Shimon Samuels at +33.609.77.01.58.