OBJECTIVES OF THE GROUP
The European Parliament Working Group on Antisemitism brings together Members of the European Parliament at a cross-party level to improve the way in which the EU combats Antisemitism.
The Working Group consists of a Bureau of MEPs, an advisory board and a secretariat.
Unfortunately, despite the most atrocious of tragedies happening right here in Europe, and despite the European Union having been founded on the ashes of the Holocaust, antisemitism is still ripe in our member states.
- The EU Fundamental Rights Survey on antisemitism published in 2013 displayed extreme levels of concern regarding physical attacks against Jews and a general atmosphere of antagonism towards Jewish communities.
- Out of eight member states surveyed, an average of 19% of Jews personally felt discriminated against harassed in the past 12 months, with several countries reaching up to 24%.
- 47% of respondents stated that they did not report the most serious incident of anti-Semitic harassment to the police because they believe that nothing would happen or change by reporting the incident(s).
- 33% of respondents have experienced one or more of the five forms of anti-Semitic harassment specified in the survey in the past five years.
- 20% of respondents avoid wearing, carrying or displaying things that might help people identify them as Jews in public all the time, with 48% doing so frequently or occasionally. In individual states this percentage goes up to 34% all the time.
- Shockingly, an average of 31% of Jews surveyed have either emigrated or considered emigrating from their country because they did not feel safe living there as a Jew. In certain states this percentage reached up to 51%, with the smallest percentage at 19%.
These are clear indications that the Jewish community of Europe still faces antisemitism and must live in fear 70 years since the liberation of Auschwitz.
- Incidents are on the rise and our incidents reports here clearly outlines unacceptable examples of public hate speech and incitement to hatred at the level of civil society and within the political domain
- A rise of extremist and neo-Nazi movements across Europe and also within the European Parliament;
- A serious and worrying rise in terror attacks related to the Jewish community all over Europe are urgent indicators of the important work that must be done in Member States and at the EU level.
The Working Group on Antisemitism will cooperate with all EU institutions, other intergroups, national parliaments and NGOs in its attempt to not only inform of the realities on the ground, but to react accordingly and take proactive measures to protect those that are affected, and legislate, where appropriate, to prevent antisemitic behaviour from being accepted or going unpunished. Confidence in the laws as well as law enforcement must be strengthened among the minorities in our member states and this intergroup would make this a priority.
To this end, Working Group on Antisemitism will invite stakeholders, organise debates, draft parliamentary resolutions and amendments and provide regular incident reports concerning the 28 member states. The Working Group on Antisemitism will be able to provide speedy responses to urgent issues that may arise at any time.
Furthermore, the European Commission highlighted that “The Fundamental Rights Agency’s report is a reminder of the continuing need for Member States to be vigilant in fight against Antisemitism and to effectively enforce EU laws on the ground. The Commission takes the findings of the report very seriously.” The Working Group on Antisemitism will support the work of the Commission in ensuring every necessary measure is taken to improve this situation.
The identity and spirit of the European Union depends on taking clear steps against Antisemitism