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January 28, 2013 11:12 pm

Global Anti-Semitism Up 45 Percent, Israeli Minister Reports

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Israeli Information and Diaspora Minister Yuli Edelstein. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Global anti-Semitism rose nearly 45 percent in 2012, according to a report presented by Israeli Information and Diaspora Minister Yuli Edelstein to the Israeli cabinet, Israel Hayom reported.

Using statistics gathered from the Kantor Center at Tel Aviv University, the report found that terror threats, attacks, verbal and physical street assaults, and vandalism against Jewish targets rose globally in 2012, particularly in Western Europe.

The report blamed the rise of Islamist movements and neo-Nazi groups in Europe and elsewhere as the cause for the spike.

Surprisingly, despite the rise of Islamist groups and Israel’s recent offensive in Gaza, antisemitism in the Middle East did not rise significantly. The report speculated that this was likely due to Arab preoccupation with internal issues and the short duration of the Gaza conflict.

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As a result, Edelstein noted that this proves there is little connection between Israel’s policies and anti-Semitism.

“During Operation Pillar of Defense and following it, there was no sharp increase in anti-Semitic incidents. There is no doubt that as part of antisemitism there are anti-Zionist approaches and delegitimization of the State of Israel, but unfortunately, no policy of the State of Israel will diminish these manifestations of racist hatred against Jews,” he said.

Speaking to in late 2012, Simone Rodan-Benzaquen, the director of the American Jewish Committee’s Paris office echoed similar conclusions.

“What is worrying now, since the murders in Toulouse, [is that] there has been an increase in antisemitic attacks unrelated to the Middle East events,” Rodan-Benzaquen said.

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