Number of Antisemitic Outrages in UK Continues to Climb in 2019, New Security Report Reveals
Antisemitic incidents in Great Britain reached a peak for the third year running in the first six months of 2019, resulting in the “highest ever” number of outrages against Jews recorded in the January to June period, the UK Jewish community’s main security organization announced on Wednesday.
The Community Security Trust (CST) recorded 892 antisemitic incidents around the UK in the first half of 2019. The organization said in a statement: “This is the highest number of incidents CST has ever recorded in the January to June period of any year and is a ten percent increase from the 810 incidents recorded during the same period in 2018; which was itself a record high for this six month period, and formed part of a record annual total of 1,688 antisemitic incidents for the whole of 2018.”
CST has recorded antisemitic incidents since 1984.
The organization said it has registered “a 37 percent increase in the number of violent antisemitic assaults, from 62 in the first six months of 2018 to 85 in the first half of 2019.” However, it added, “none of these violent incidents were classified by CST as ‘Extreme Violence,’ which would mean they involved potential grievous bodily harm (GBH) or a threat to life.”
Additionally, there were 38 incidents of damage and destruction of Jewish property, 710 incidents of abusive behavior, including verbal abuse, antisemitic graffiti, antisemitic abuse via social media and one-off cases of hate mail, 49 direct antisemitic threats and 10 cases of mass-mailed antisemitic leaflets or emails.
A total of 323 incidents involved social media, comprising 36 percent of the overall total.
“This is the third year in a row that CST has seen an increase in reports of antisemitic incidents,” David Delew — CST chief executive — said in a statement. “The problem is spreading across the country and online, it reflects deepening divisions in our society and it is causing increasing anxiety in the Jewish community.”
Marie van der Zyl — president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews — pointed out in a separate statement that over 100 of the online incidents recorded by CST “were specifically related to alleged antisemitism within the [opposition] Labour Party.”
Said van der Zyl: “This makes shameful reading for the [Labour Party’s] leadership. They must finally take the steps required to rid their party of this appalling racism. Defeating the evil of antisemitism will take a concerted effort by the country’s political leadership and civil society to ensure that this country remains a safe and happy place for the Jewish community.”