SWC Alarmed by Unprecedented Surge in Anti-Semitic Incidents in Germany

July 1, 2024

The Simon Wiesenthal Center has expressed profound concern over the alarming escalation in anti-Semitic incidents in Germany, as reported by the Federal Association of Research and Information Centers on Antisemitism (RIAS).

Key findings of the report from the RIAS are as follows:

  1. A record 4,782 antisemitic incidents were documented in 2023, marking an 80% increase from the previous year.

  2. 2,787 incidents occurred after October 7, 2023, following Hamas’ attack on Israel.

  3. Anti-Semitic incidents in educational institutions more than doubled, with 471 cases reported.

  4. 71% of incidents were characterized as Israel-focused anti-Semitism.

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Associate Dean and Director of Global Social Action for the Simon Wiesenthal Center, stated: "These shocking statistics confirm our gravest concerns. The surge in anti-Semitism, particularly in educational settings and public spaces, poses a significant threat to the fabric of Jewish life in Germany. We implore German authorities to take decisive action in combating this rising tide of hatred."

The Center urges the German government to:

  1. Implement robust security measures for Jewish institutions and communities.

  2. Enhance and expand education programs to combat anti-Semitism in schools and universities.

  3. Intensify efforts to monitor and counter online anti-Semitism.

  4. Ensure swift and effective prosecution of anti-Semitic hate crimes.

  5. Promote and support visits and exchanges between Germans and Israelis, fostering stronger ties between Germany and Israel.

Daniel Schuster, Senior Representative of Europe for the Simon Wiesenthal Center, added: "Given that 71% of the incidents are Israel-related anti-Semitism, it is crucial for Germany to prevent the proliferation of Hamas' narrative regarding the current war in Gaza, which is being disseminated effectively on social media, particularly on TikTok. It is imperative to develop strategies to counter this false & hateful narrative, which provides the foundation for perpetuating hatred against Jews. Moreover, it's important to note that this hatred, if left unchecked, will not be confined to Jews alone and will only grow undermining social cohesion and democratic values throughout Germany."

For further information, please email Michele Alkin, Director of Global Communications at malkin@wiesenthal.com or Erik Simon at esimon@wiesenthal.com, join the Center on Facebook, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent directly to your Twitter feed. 

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is an international Jewish human rights organization. It holds consultative status at the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the Council of Europe, the OAS, and the Latin American Parliament (PARLATINO).   

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