February 20, 2019

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Record number of antisemitic incidents in Britain


From The Independent:

Antisemitic hate crimes in the UK have hit a record high, new figures show, prompting calls for more “visible and frequent” prosecutions for such incidents.

The Jewish community was targeted at a rate of nearly four times a day last year, according to statistics from the Community Security Trust (CST), a charity that monitors antisemitism, which recorded 1,382 antisemitic incidents nationwide in 2017.

This was the highest tally the organisation has registered for a calendar year since it began gathering the data in 1984, with the figure up by 3 per cent compared with 2016 – which had itself been a record annual total.

A breakdown of the crimes shows the number of violent antisemitic assaults increased by more than a third (34 per cent), from 108 in 2016 to 145. Three-quarters of all the antisemitic incidents were recorded in Greater London and Greater Manchester, where the two largest Jewish communities in the UK are located.

The most common single type of incident in 2017 involved verbal abuse randomly directed at Jewish people in public, the figures show.

The report itself notes the motivation of the attackers when known:

 Of the 221 antisemitic incidents in 2017 showing ideological motivation or beliefs as well as antisemitism, 140 showed far right motivation or beliefs; 67 showed anti-Israel motivation or beliefs; and 14 showed Islamist motivation or beliefs.

Violent antisemitic assaults increased 34% in one year:

There were 145 violent antisemitic assaults reported to CST in 2017, an increase of 34 per cent from the 108 violent incidents recorded in 2016 and the highest number CST has ever recorded in this category. The previous record high was 121 antisemitic assaults in 2009. A wide spectrum of incidents falls within the category of Assault, from minor acts to more violent ones. 

And incidents are significantly  under-reported:

 It is likely that there is significant under-reporting of antisemitic incidents to both CST and the Police, and that the number of antisemitic incidents that took place is significantly higher than the number recorded in this report. A 2013 survey of Jewish experiences and perceptions of antisemitism in the EU found that 72 per cent of British Jews who had experienced antisemitic harassment over the previous five years had not reported it to the Police or to any other organisation; 57 per cent of British Jews who had experienced antisemitic violence or the threat of violence had not reported it; and 46 per cent of British Jews who had suffered antisemitic vandalism to their home or car had not reported it (despite this, UK reporting rates were the highest of the eight countries polled). The same survey also found that, over the previous 12 months, 21 per cent of British Jews had suffered antisemitic harassment, three per cent had suffered antisemitic violence or the threat of violence and two per cent had experienced antisemitic vandalism to their home or car.

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