Antisemitic Incidents During The Gaza War - Reactions - Governments


  • Argentina: The Argentinian government condemned antisemitic incidents.
  • France: French President Nicolas Sarkozy urged leaders of the Jewish, Muslim and Catholic communities to condemn the incidents, and warned that there would be "zero tolerance" for antisemitic attacks. Interior Minister Michele Alliot-Marie met Muslim and Jewish officials to discuss the tensions and antisemitic slogans heard at anti-Israeli rallies. Prime Minister François Fillon said that French authorities would increase their checks on television, radio and the Internet to prevent any hate messages prompted by the conflict in Gaza from spreading.
  • Greece: Greek President Karolos Papoulias was reported to have said "What are our friends, the Israelis, doing? Are they flying airplanes and killing in cold blood?", but did not make any statements of the various antisemitic attacks despite informal appeals. The President of the Greek Parliament Dimitris Sioufas declined to answer an official letter of protest by the Central Board of Jewish communities on the antisemitic article by parliamentary party leader Georgios Karatzaferis. No member of the Government or any political party did condemn any antisemitic attack or reference.
  • Israel: Israel expressed its concern over the rise in antisemitic attacks and called on world leaders to condemn all forms of incitement and hatred and to hold to account those responsible. Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said that whatever one's opinion of Israel's military operation, it should not be used to legitimize hate and antisemitic incitement.
  • Netherlands: Dutch premier Jan Peter Balkenende said that Dutch Muslim and Jewish groups need to work together to ease tensions following a series of apparent antisemitic attacks.
  • Poland: Polish Ambassador to Israel Agnieszka Magdziak-Miszewska said that any comparisons between Israel's operation in Gaza and the Holocaust committed by Nazi Germany were "pure antisemitism which cannot be justified."
  • Spain: Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos warned that criticism of Israel should not take antisemitic undertones. He said "Everyone is free to attend demonstrations", but called for "a lot of caution and prudence." "Antisemitism must be avoided... The Israeli government should be criticised if it used disproportionate force, but without going too far in the sense that everything Jewish or Semitic would need to be unanimously criticised."
  • Turkey: Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan condemned antisemitism, although Jews living there believed that the language he used during the conflict gave some a license to turn their outrage at Israel's action into racial hatred. In an open letter to Erdogan a group of five US Jewish organizations wrote that Turkish Jews felt threatened, adding: "A connection is clearly perceived between the inflammatory denunciation of Israel by Turkish officials and the rise of antisemitism." However, Erdogan's foreign policy adviser Ahmet Davutoglu told journalists during a briefing on Gaza that "Since the 15th century Turkey has been a safe haven for all religious groups... there is not a single case of antisemitism in Turkey."
  • United Kingdom: A group of 40 British MPs issued a parliamentary motion condemning attacks on the Jewish community as a result of the war in Gaza. Member of Parliament Sadiq Khan condemned the incidents, writing "I am sickened at the sight of a swastika daubed on a synagogue in Hertfordshire: outraged that there are children in British cities afraid to go to school in case they get attacked on the way." Liberal Democrat shadow home secretary Chris Huhne said: "The Home Secretary and the police need to stamp on antisemitic crime quickly and firmly." Foreign Secretary David Miliband wrote that he was "alarmed at the attempts of extremist voices in the UK to use the conflict to legitimise antisemitic sentiments." Foreign Office Minister Lord Malloch-Brown condemned the targeting of Jews around the world as a direct result of Israel's foreign policy. London Mayor Boris Johnson condemned those who had used the Gaza conflict as a platform for antisemitism.
  • Venezuela: In responding to the desecration of a Caracas synagogue, Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro called on "all the Venezuelan people, the entire Venezuelan community, to reject these actions, with the same moral force with which we reject the crimes committed against the Palestinian people." When the Jewish community met with Maduro, he declared: "We, Bolivarians, will not allow for any demonstration against Jews or any other religious expression of our people in our territory; this runs counter to the principles of President Hugo Chávez and the most sacred principles of our people enshrined in the Constitution". President Hugo Chávez condemned the attack, suggesting that his political foes were responsible for it. Jewish community leader Abraham Levy spoke at the world Jewish Congress in Jerusalem and accused Chávez and the government of sanctioning antisemitism. Maduro responded by saying, "All of the Muslim, Jewish and Christian communities know religious discrimination is not a problem that has or will have a place in our society", Maduro said, complaining that every time a country criticizes Israel's government, it "is automatically added to the list of anti-Semites."

Read more about this topic:  Antisemitic Incidents During The Gaza War, Reactions

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