SWC Commends Finnish Court Ruling Against Anti-Semitic Articles Distributed by Department Store Magnate

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"Conviction follows Wiesenthal Centre's Protest and criminalizes concepts once current during the 1941-1944 Finnish alliance with Nazi Germany"

Paris, 22 October 2013

Juha Karkkainen, founder of the department store network that bears his name, has been fined 45,000€ for, "Inciting to hatred against an ethnic group" in his free distribution newspaper Magneetti Media. The Court ordered him to remove the anti-Semitic articles from the Magneetti website.

On 29 July 2013, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre's Director for International Affairs, Dr. Shimon Samuels, wrote to Finnish President, Sauli Vainamo Niinistö urging his condemnation of these articles including: "The Jews Who Control the Media", "Zionist Terrorism in Norway", "The Great Rabbi Rape Cover-Up" etc.

Jewish organisations of Finland had in parallel launched a legal suit.

"The Wiesenthal Centre congratulates all parties who have achieved a historic judgment that criminalizes concepts once current during the 1941-1944 Finish alliance with Nazi Germany," observed Samuels, adding, "In that the words 'Jew ' and ' Zionist' are used interchangeably in Magneetti Media, the Court's decision is in line with the anti-discrimination provision of the European Union and implements its Fundamental Rights Agency 2004 Working Definition of Anti-Semitism."

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For further information please contact Dr. Shimon Samuels on 00(33)609770158, join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter page or mobile device.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament