European Jewish Congress
European Union will be judged a failure if exodus of Jews from Europe continues
EJC In Action
European Union will be judged a failure if exodus of Jews from Europe continues

European Jewish Congress (EJC) President Dr. Moshe Kantor sounded the alarm over the significant rise of Antisemitism on the continent at the first Annual Colloquium on fundamental rights in the EU, where he spoke on behalf of European Jewry.

“The issue of refugees is a great test for Europe. However, it is failing a greater test every day in Europe,” Dr. Kantor said. “Earlier in the year, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said, after the deadly anti-Semitic terrorist murder at the Hyper Cacher market in Paris: ‘If 100,000 Jews leave, France will no longer be France. The French Republic will be judged a failure.’” 

“I would like to take this a step further. If hundreds of thousands of Jews leave the European Union, which is becoming a very strong possibility, then it too will be judged a failure. Over the past few years, tens of thousands of Jews have left Europe to seek a safer home elsewhere, and today, one-third of Europe’s nearly 2.5 million Jews are considering emigration. Whole areas of Europe are being emptied of Jews and not enough is being done.”

The Colloquium was hosted by First Vice President for Better Regulation, Interinstitutional Relations, the Rule of Law and the Charter of Fundamental Rights, Frans Timmermans, in cooperation with EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, Věra Jourová.

EU Commission First Vice-President said in his remarks that: “Without the Jewish community, Europe will cease to exist” and “Antisemitism, if left unchallenged will pose a great problem to our society.”

At the Colloquium, the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) released a report of Antisemitic incidents in 2014, which once again demonstrated a substantial rise in hate attacks on Jews across the continent. In France, the number of incidents more than doubled from 423 attacks in 2013 to 851 in 2014. 

The report notes that “Antisemitic and intolerant attitudes can lead to behaviour punishable by law, but Antisemitism needs to be countered beyond the criminal justice system perspective. Two-thirds of respondents to FRA’s survey on Jewish people’s experiences and perceptions of Antisemitism consider it to be a problem in their country, and 76 % believe that during the past five years Antisemitism has increased in the country where they live.” 

During his address, Dr. Kantor called for the immediate implementation of various steps to combat Antisemitism, including the creation of a special EU Task Force on Antisemitism, with a dedicated full-time Envoy, as they have in the U.S., France and Germany.  He also called for the establishment of a clear and officially recognized definition of Antisemitism to be adopted by the EU, as well as new legislative powers to tackle hate, extremism and intolerance. 

“Unfortunately, it seems that Jews are also unique in being one of the few victims of racism in Western society where the boundaries of what is considered hate are set by the perpetrators themselves and not the victims, Dr. Kantor said.  

“In 2005, the European Union Monitoring Center on Racism and Xenophobia (EUMC) released the ‘Working definition of anti-Semitism’. However, it was never officially adopted and the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency recently taken the definition from its website, giving an unacceptable victory to those who worked extremely hard against its adoption."

“The lack of a unified and clear definition means that anti-Semites will continue to act with protection and freedom, knowing that frequently they cannot be prosecuted.” 

Wednesday, October 07, 2015
Subscribe to our Newsletter
Life in Israel
  • Massive section of Western Wall and Roman theatre uncovered after 1,700 years
    Archaeologists are one step closer to solving the riddle of what took place in Jerusalem following the destruction of the city by Romans in 70 CE.

    On Friday, October 20, 2017 Massive section of Western Wall and Roman theatre uncovered after 1,700 years
  • Israel targets fashion industry over underweight models
    Israeli lawmakers want to tighten a ban on the employment of underweight models and on the undeclared digital slimming-down of fashion images, amid concern that the measures are being routinely flouted even as they are adopted abroad.

    On Friday, October 20, 2017 Israel targets fashion industry over underweight models
  • Work on Israel-Cyprus-Greece electricity link to start in 2018
    A Cypriot official said work on an electric cable linking the power grids of Israel, Cyprus and Greece is on track to start in the first quarter of 2018 after Greek and Cypriot regulators approved the project.

    On Friday, October 20, 2017 Work on Israel-Cyprus-Greece electricity link to start in 2018
  • In Israel, ultra-Orthodox women emerge as high-tech entrepreneurs
    While Silicon Valley is just beginning to confront decades of sexism and discrimination, female founders in Israel’s ultra-Orthodox community say their segregated gender roles have an unintended benefit -- encouraging growing ranks of women entrepreneurs.

    On Friday, October 20, 2017 In Israel, ultra-Orthodox women emerge as high-tech entrepreneurs
  • First fully disabled-accessible synagogue opened in Jerusalem
    Construction of the first fully disabled-accessible synagogue in Jerusalem is about to be finished, giving disabled worshipers easy access to the compound, with comfortable seating arrangements for wheelchair-bound visitors, Braille bibles and more.

    On Wednesday, October 11, 2017 First fully disabled-accessible synagogue opened in Jerusalem
  • Survey: 60 percent of Arab Israelis have a positive view of the state
    A poll of Israeli Arabs has found that sixty percent surveyed said they had a favourable view of the state, while 37% said their view was unfavourable.

    On Wednesday, October 04, 2017 Survey: 60 percent of Arab Israelis have a positive view of the state
  • Israel's trade with Russia leaps by 25 percent
    Trade between Israel and Russia has grown this year by 25 percent, officials from both countries revealed, amid complications with other Russian trading partners.

    On Wednesday, October 04, 2017 Israel's trade with Russia leaps by 25 percent
  • Israel aims to double the number of people working in hi-tech
    The Israel Innovation Authority aims to double the number of high-tech workers in the country over the next decade, while encouraging companies in older industry to use more technology and become more innovative, the authority said in its annual report released on Sunday.

    On Wednesday, October 04, 2017 Israel aims to double the number of people working in hi-tech
  • 20,000 Gazan lulavs arrive in Israel
    A shipment of 20,000 date palm fronds were transported on Monday from the Gaza Strip to Israel where they were to be sold for use in a traditional Jewish religious ritual during the coming Sukkot holiday, the Defence Ministry said.

    On Wednesday, October 04, 2017 20,000 Gazan lulavs arrive in Israel
  • Israeli intelligence helped to thwart dozens of terror attacks around the world
    The Israeli intelligence community has shared information with other countries over the past two years that has helped thwart dozens of terror attacks about to be perpetrated by Islamists who were in contact with members of Islamic State and Middle Eastern factions identified with Al-Qaida.

    On Thursday, September 28, 2017 Israeli intelligence helped to thwart dozens of terror attacks around the world
President's Page Security and Crisis Centre by EJC European Parliament Working Group On Antisemitism