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January 12, 2009

 

WIESENTHAL CENTER: GAZA SPAWNS WORLDWIDE SPIKE IN ANTI-SEMITISM

Center denounces genocidal threat by leading Muslim cleric, online lists of prominent Jews on UK Muslim websites and attacks on Chicago and Paris synagogues

The Simon Wiesenthal Center today urged Muslim leaders throughout North America, the UK and beyond to condemn calls for violence against Jews around the world. This includes a call by influential Muslim cleric, Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawi, to “kill them, [Jews] down to the very last one”,  as well as postings on Muslim Public Affairs Committee UK’S  (MPACUK) that lists prominent British Jews and British business leaders who support Israel, an alarming development given the current climate in Muslim-Jewish relations.

Qaradawi’s screed, which was translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute, came in a Friday sermon broadcast on Al Jazeera. He said, “Oh Allah, take this oppressive, Jewish, Zionist band of people. Oh Allah, do not spare a single one of them. Oh Allah, count their numbers, and kill them, down to the very last one.”

The MPACUK postings, downloaded by Wiesenthal Center researchers who monitor digital terrorism and hate, include quotes like, “The names and addresses of Wealthy Zionist Jews can be found in the lists of sponsors and contributors of Zionist Charities. The names and addresses of Company Directors that work for Military Industrial Companies that support these tyrannical regimes can be found in publications….” Links to Jewish non-profits in the UK are also posted.

“Against the backdrop of the conflict in Gaza, such postings could serve to intimidate members of the Jewish community or worse,” said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Wiesenthal Center. “We are also deeply worried by the spike in anti-Jewish hate crimes on both sides of the Atlantic, including attacks by Hamas supporters on four synagogues in Chicago this past Sabbath and last night’s Molotov cocktail attack at a synagogue and Jewish community center in Paris. In addition, we are outraged by the genocidal verbal incitement to ‘Gas the Jews’ that have become a staple at anti-Israel demonstrations around the world.”

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, and the Council of Europe.

For more information, please contact the Center's Public Relations Department, 310-553-9036.