Rise in anti-Semitism demands stronger action, urge MEPs 

Press Releases 
  • Call for more effective prosecution and cross-border cooperation
  • EU countries asked to appoint national coordinators to combat anti-Semitism
  • Holocaust history should be taught in schools
  • Leading politicians urged to denounce any anti-Semitic statement
Anti-Semitic hate crime must be prosecuted more vigorously©AP Photo/Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland  

The recent rise in anti-Semitism across the EU requires more and stronger action, MEPs say in a resolution approved on Thursday.

Hate speech and violence against Europe’s Jewish citizens are incompatible with EU values, so all EU member states must take measures to ensure the security of their Jewish citizens, say MEPs. They call on leading national politicians to oppose anti-Semitic statements systematically and publicly, and urge every member state to appoint a national coordinator to combat anti-Semitism.

Law enforcement

Racist motives should be deemed an aggravating factor in criminal offences. And anti-Semitic acts committed on the internet should also be prosecuted, says the resolution.

MEPs also call for good cross-border cooperation in prosecution especially in the case of terrorist acts. Police forces should set up special anti-hate crime units, and to make prosecution more efficient and effective, all member states should adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of what constitutes anti-Semitism.

Civil society

Online intermediaries, such as search engines, social media, and app platforms, should take stronger action to combat anti-Semitic hate speech, say MEPs. The history of the Holocaust (or Shoah) should be taught in schools and history books should give an accurate description of Jewish history and life and avoid all forms of anti-Semitism, they add.

EU priorities on fundamental rights

In a separate vote, MEPs gave their consent to the working priorities for 2018-2022 of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights, including asylum for and integration of refugees and migrants, fighting racism and xenophobia, protecting personal data and Roma inclusion.

In talks, Parliament's negotiators have pressed the EU Commission and Council to make police work and counter-terrorism legislation fully open to scrutiny by the agency – an idea that they have promised to look into.