- Welcome the 1st Colloquium on Fundamental Rights organised by the EuropeanCommission’s VP Frans Timmermans on 1-2 October, on the issue of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.
- Anti-Semitism is a topical issue given the rise in discrimination and racist crimes targeting Jews, or those perceived as such. The issues should be connected to the broader anti-racism and non-discrimination fight with increasing Afrophobia, anti-migrant/ refugees racism, anti-Roma/Gypsyism as well as other grounds of discrimination.
- The rise of different forms of racism is a direct violation of the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and the rule of law, principles upon which the European Union is founded and which are common to the Member States.
- Anti-Semitism is a specific form of discrimination and racism based on people’s real or perceived belonging to the Jewish community.
- Anti-Semitism can be expressed in the form of policies and practices, including by restraining freedom of religion, verbal and physical attacks, threats, harassment, property damage, graffiti or other hate speech, including on social media and more broadly on the internet.
- Anti-Semitic stereotyping and stigmatisation continues to be a reality in Member States. This phenomenon allows violence, discrimination and hate speech against Jewish communities to be normalised in European Union society.
- Worrying crimes against Jewish people and worship places in recent years such as in Toulouse, Brussels, Paris and Copenhagen as well as rising casual anti-Semitism.
- Jewish people wearing visible religious symbols are most likely to be targeted.
- The intersectionality between anti-Semitism and gender discrimination needs to be taken into consideration.
- Anti-Semitic speeches are often openly expressed, including in the media and by some political parties.
- Expression of anti-Semitism on the internet especially on social media is on the rise.
- The common nature of anti-Semitic prejudices contribute to social exclusion, discrimination, and sometimes even violence must be dealt with through formal and non-formal education systems.
Requests for action by European Institutions/Member States
- Welcome the appointment of a coordiantor on and anti-Semitism. The role of the coordinator should be
- to ensure that the EU reacts swiftly in serious cases of attacks or systemic discrimination targeting Jews by calling Member States to redress the situation and reminding the EU fundamental rights standards and legislation they should abide to;
- to ensure that issues related to this community is understood and mainstreamed in the relevant EU institutions. Permanent work and consultation with civil society groups coming from these two communities are therefore necessary.
- Call on the European Commission to propose a framework for national strategies/policy commitments to combat anti-Semitism with specific and concrete goals according to each national context, including the essential component of educational curricula that effectively promote respect for diversity.
- Call on Member States to adopt the European Union Equal Treatment Directive which would cover discrimination on the basis of religion or belief outside of employment and fill in the gaps in the non-discrimination legislation framework.
- Call for further implementation and strengthening of EU and national legal basis to tackle hate crime and to ensure investigation and prosecution of racist crimes.
- Call for harmonised data collection methods as well as strengthening methods of reporting and recording of incidents.