The Sunday Telegraph

Britain’s Jewish community on alert as crisis heightens tensions


THE Jewish community in Britain has been put on high alert following Iran’s attack on Israel.

Last night, the Community Security Trust (CST) – a charity which exists to protect Jews from anti-Semitism – said it had issued a notice to Jewish organisati­ons to upgrade security measures in light of the attack.

The charity said: “CST has tonight sent a notice to all communal organisati­ons, requesting that security measures are fully implemente­d.

“This is a necessary precaution because of the situation between Iran and Israel. It is not due to any specific informatio­n or warning here in the UK.”

It added: “CST has worked tirelessly with our community, police and government since the war began on October 7, doing everything we can together to support and enable UK Jewish life. This will continue for as long as it is needed.”

The Board of Deputies of British Jews said last night: “We are praying for the safety of Israel and its citizens, as well as the entire region, as the Iranian regime launches a direct attack.”

Since the Oct 7 attack on Israel by Hamas, the British Jewish community has experience­d a huge surge in antiSemiti­c incidents in the UK.

According to the CST’s annual report released in February, there were 4,103 anti-Semitic incidents in the UK last year, nearly double the previous record in 2021.

Two-thirds of the anti-Semitism reports received were on or after Oct 7.

Attacks increased by 147 per cent compared with the 1,662 recorded in 2022 and were 81 per cent higher than the previous annual record of 2,261 in 2021.

The CST said that the speed at which anti-Semites mobilised after the attack, and the huge increase in anti-Jewish hate, “was, if anything, a celebratio­n of Hamas’ massacre by people whose own hatred was emboldened and, in their minds, legitimise­d by the brutality enacted on civilians in southern Israel”.

Incidents were at a record high across all types of “hate” last year. CST recorded 266 assaults, double the 136 in 2022 and the most ever recorded in a year.

Cases of damage and desecratio­n of Jewish property rose by 146 per cent from 74 in 2022 to 182 last year, the highest-ever annual figure in the category. Threats to people, institutio­ns or property – as opposed to more general abuse – rose by 196 per cent from 103 incidents in 2022 to 305 last year, another record.

Abusive behaviour also hit a record high with 3,328 incidents, more than in any other year and an increase of 149 per cent from the 1,339 instances reported in 2022.

The charity noted a “worrying proportion of children perpetrati­ng anti-Semitism”, with under-18s thought to be behind a fifth of the 2,086 incidents recorded where the offender or offenders’ approximat­e age was provided.

The CST said it had received a further 2,185 reports of potential incidents that were not deemed to be anti-Semitic but instead involved anti-Israel activity rather than anti-Jewish language, motivation or targeting and so were not included in the 2023 total.

‘We sent a notice to all organisati­ons, requesting that security measures are fully implemente­d’

 ?? ?? An Israeli flag is burnt in Tehran following an alleged air strike on the Iranian embassy
An Israeli flag is burnt in Tehran following an alleged air strike on the Iranian embassy

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