Germany Reports Similar Number of Anti-Semitic Incidents in 2017 From Previous Year

Petra Pau (Wikipedia Commons)

The number of anti-Semitic incidents reported in Germany in 2017 remained about the same as the previous year.

Published Monday in the Berlin daily newspaper Tagesspiegel, the report — based on police statistics delivered to Bundestag Vice President Petra Pau of the Left Party — indicated there were 1,453 incidents reported in 2017 — about the same as in 2016, which had a total of 1,468. Right-wing-oriented perpetrators committed about 95 percent of the crimes, the report said.

Most of the incidents were so-called “propaganda” crimes involving verbal or written incitement to hate. There were 32 violent crimes and 160 cases of property damage in 2017.

Pau told Tagesspiegel that she suspected the real numbers were higher, since many incidents go unreported. The lawmaker has submitted official queries on anti-Semitic crimes nationwide for several years.

Concern about anti-Semitism is high in Germany, with some Jewish community leaders and politicians warning that anti-Jewish and extreme anti-Zionist attitudes among more than a million new refugees from the Middle East and North Africa are a ticking time bomb.

In January, the Bundestag voted to establish a commissioner to deal with anti-Semitism in the country, motivated in part by such concerns. Pau’s Left Party had abstained from the vote, saying the proposal overemphasized immigrants as a source of the problem.

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