New York, NY, December 4, 2003 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today welcomed a decision by foreign ministers of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to host a conference on anti-Semitism in Berlin in April 2004. The conference is being hosted by the German government as a follow up to a meeting convened in June 2003 in Vienna.
At a two-day meeting in Maastricht, the Netherlands, officials from the 55 OSCE participating states this week issued a ministerial decision which called on states to collect statistics on anti-Semitic violence and tasked its human rights arm to gather data and report regularly on anti-Semitism. The decision also commits OSCE to promote and disseminate best practices and lessons learned in the fight against intolerance.
"As anti-Semitic violence continues to flare in this region, we are gratified that the OSCE Ministerial Council is waging a sustained, vigorous effort to fight anti-Semitism," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "Since there is currently no other regional body reporting on anti-Semitism, OSCE's new data collection effort will be critical. Public reporting is the first step to assessing the problem and combating it.
"This decision demonstrates that the OSCE takes this problem seriously and is willing to take real steps to institutionalize vital monitoring and counteraction."