Over 100 in­ci­dents a month, eight months in a row

The Jewish Chronicle - - NEWS -

ex­treme­ly­dis­tress­ing.Idon’twant­to­live in a coun­try where any mem­ber of the Jewish­com­mu­ni­tyfeel­sun­safe,afraidor dis­crim­i­nated against and it is shock­ing thatthenum­berof an­ti­semiticin­ci­dents is on the rise in the UK.”

In­ci­dents de­tailed in the re­port in­clude gas can­is­ters thrown at Jewish shop­pers in Lon­don by men who shouted “Heil Hitler”; the des­e­cra­tion of 16 grave­stone­sa­taJewishceme­tery­inManch­ester;abrick­thrown­throughthewin­dowof aJewish­home­inLiver­pool;anda Jewish­girlinManch­ester­ap­proachedby three youths who shouted: “We will call Hitler to shoot you.”

The worst month was May when CST recorded 135 ex­am­ples of Jew-ha­tred.

From May to De­cem­ber there were over 100 in­ci­dents per month — an un­prece­dented run of high fig­ures, says the re­port. In the decade prior to 2016, monthly to­tals over 100 oc­curred only six times.

Over three-quar­ters of the 1,309 in­ci­dents recorded last year took place in Greater Lon­don and Manch­ester, the cities with the two largest Jewish com­mu­ni­ties in the UK.

In the 36-page re­port CST said there were 813 recorded an­ti­semitic in­ci­dents in Greater Lon­don – an alarm­ing 65 per cent in­crease on 2015’s fig­ures.

Some 267 an­ti­semitic in­ci­dents, one third of the to­tal for Greater Lon­don, took place in the bor­ough of Bar­net, home to the largest con­cen­tra­tion of Jews in the UK.

There were 89 recorded in­ci­dents in the­bor­oughof Hack­ney,77in­Red­bridge, 22 in Brent and 17 in Har­row and 17 in Tower Ham­lets. In Greater Manch­ester there were 205 in­ci­dents, which rep­re­sented a fall of nine per cent on the pre­vi­ous year.

Else­where, 291 in­ci­dents were re­ported in 96 lo­ca­tions around the coun­try, in­clud­ing 35 in Hert­ford­shire, of which 17 were in Bore­ham­wood.

There were 21 in­ci­dents in Leeds, 16 in Gateshead, 13 in Liver­pool and nine in Brighton and Hove.

Mr Rich said: “The wor­ry­ing thing is

that the monthly to­tal from May is much higher than we were used to.

“Once that con­tin­ues for month af­ter month you do start to think ‘well, this is just how it is go­ing to be’.”

The re­port re­veals Jewish schools, pupils and teach­ers were tar­geted in 83 in­ci­dents — a small dip on the 86 sim­i­lar cases in 2015.

There were also 41 in­ci­dents where the vic­tims were Jewish stu­dents or aca­demic s—a sig­nif­i­cant rise on the 21 re­ported in 2015.

De­spite the high lev­els recorded, CST said it feared there was still “sig­nif­i­cant un­der-re­port­ing of in­ci­dents” both to them­selves and to the po­lice.

The ma­jor­ity of at­tacks were com­mit­ted by white males — although CST recorded that a mi­nor­ity of vic­tims re­ported their at­tack­ers as be­ing of “black”, “south Asian” or in a very few cases “Arab or north African” ori­gin.

The re­port con­cluded that while “it would not be ac­cept­able to de­fine all anti-Is­rael ac­tiv­ity as an­ti­semitic, it can­not be ig­nored that con­tem­po­rary an­ti­semitism oc­cur in the con­text of, or be ac­com­pa­nied by, ex­treme feel­ings over the Is­rael Pales­tine con­flict.”

There were 236 in­ci­dents which showed far-right, anti-Is­rael or Is­lamist mo­ti­va­tions — mak­ing up 18 per cent of all in­ci­dents recorded. There were also 287 in­ci­dents that in­volved the use of in­ter­net-based-so­cial­me­dia—22per­cent of the to­tal for the year.

The re­port said: “This re­flects the role of so­cial me­dia as a place where Jews en­counter an­ti­semitism and the ease with which it can be re­ported di­rectly to the CST on­line, rather than be­ing an ab­so­lute mea­sure of the amount of an­ti­semitism on so­cial me­dia .” De­spite the in­crease in at­tacks, no in­ci­dent in­volved ex­treme vi­o­lence re­sult­ing in loss of life or griev­ous bod­ily harm.

John Mann, chair of the All-Party Par­lia­men­tary Group Against Anti semitism said the fig­ures were “very wor­ry­ing”.

He said: “The rise of na­tion­al­ist pop­ulism and a fail­ure to boldly op­pose an­ti­semitism are both con­tribut­ing fac­tors to this in­crease that must be chal­lenged by us all.”

As­sis­tant Chief Con­sta­ble Garry She­wan, Na­tional Lead for Polic­ing of Jewish Com­mu­ni­ties, said: “These fig­ures demon­strate how im­por­tant it is in the UK for us to all unite to say a loud collective ‘stop’ to those who en­gage in hate re­lated ac­tiv­ity. An­ti­semitism causes worry in our Jewish com­mu­ni­ties which must be con­fronted. If you see, read or hear an­ti­semitism please re­port it to ei­ther the po­lice or CST.”

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