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November 15, 2014 10:00 am

French-Jewish Umbrella: Recognizing ‘Palestine’ May Stoke Anti-Semitism

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Police vehicle in France. Photo: Wiki Commons.

JNS.orgCRIF, the umbrella group representing France’s Jewish community, issued a statement suggesting that the French government’s upcoming vote on Palestinian statehood would cause a rise in anti-Semitism and diminish France’s role in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

A bloc of Socialist lawmakers put forth a proposal for the recognition of “Palestine” in the French National Assembly, to be voted on Nov. 28, while a similar proposal was also put forth in the French Senate. But both votes would be purely symbolic, as President Francois Hollande has exclusive power over foreign policy decisions.

“This resolution is not conducive to the establishment of peace between Israel and the Palestinians, it may generate new tensions on the ground if it was voted and supported by the government, it would call into question the position and role of France as an arbiter between Israel and the Palestinians,” CRIF head Roger Cukierman said in a statement.

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“In France, after the anti-Semitic riots this summer, this statement would certainly not be understood as a peace initiative, and might exacerbate anti-Semitic tensions which we saw last summer,” he added.

Sweden recently became the first European Union member to officially recognize “Palestine.” The British Parliament approved such recognition in a non-binding vote, and similar proposals have been put forth in Ireland and Spain.

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