17/02/2016

EUJS speaks up at European colloquium on combating antisemitism in Europe

EUJS speaks up at European colloquium on combating antisemitism in Europe

Yesterday, EUJS actively participated in the first roundtable session at the European Parliament led by the European Parliament Anti-Racism and Diversity Intergroup (ARDI). Hosted by Sajjad Karim and Juan Fernando López Aguilar (MEPs), the roundtable brought together representatives from over 10 different NGOs to discuss the recent outcomes of independent research initiatives and reports on issues of hate speech, focusing specifically towards Jews and Muslims. Among those who spoke were representatives from Twitter, Director of CEJI, Robin Sclafani, as well as EUJS President, Benny Fischer.

In her report given to the colloquium, Coordinator for combating antisemitism, Katharina von Schnurbein, remarked on the "persisent increase in anticsemitic attacks". Among the outcomes of her report, she stressed the need to "teach the teachers" on how to recognise antisemitism in schools. Similar outcomes were reported by others as the need for education against radicalisation became a repeted theme throughout the discussion.

NGOs, including EJC, CEJI and EUJS remarked on the continuous need for national strategies, better data collection and more dialogue between stakeholders.

In his speech to the colloquium, President Benny highlighted the reality of living in a time where security cameras, and bullet-proof windows are standard procedures for keeping Jewish communities safe. "Today's students are part of a generation that grew up with all of this, that stopped actively noticing, as we have never experienced it differently", Benny explained.

"[We] find this solution in working towards an inclusive narrative for Europe, in standing up for Europe's core values. We do this, because we see a long term solution not in fences, but in the creation of a Europe, that is inclusive towards everyone, no matter what gender, sexual orientation, religion or ethnicity; a narrative that does not leave us, that does not leave Europe's citizens out."

To read Benny's full address to the colloquium, click here.

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