ADL Urges France to "Tackle This Problem" Of Increasing Violent Anti-Semitic Attacks
New York, NY, March 8, 2006 … A series of violent assaults on Jewish men in a Parisian suburb in the aftermath of the horrific murder of a young Jewish man is fueling concerns about the potential for a new wave of anti-Semitism in France. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today urged the French government to "remain resolute, to tackle this problem" and to reassure Jews around the world that France has no tolerance for anti-Semitism.
In a letter to Nicolas Sarkozy, the French Interior Minister, Barbara B. Balser, ADL National Chair and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director said that the murder of Ilan Halimi and a series of assaults against identifiably Jewish men in the last week "have fueled global concerns regarding a new wave of anti-Semitism in France."
"We recognize and appreciate that the government of France is committed to fighting anti-Semitism through law enforcement, education and legislation, said Ms. Balser and Mr. Foxman. "We respectfully call on you to remain resolute, to tackle this problem confidentially and decisively and to reassure Jews in France and abroad that anti-Semitism will not be tolerated."
They added, "We believe it is imperative that your government step up its educational programs in working with leaders of the Muslim community in France so that there can be greater activity in that community in confronting the scourge of anti-Semitism."
Since the Halimi murder, several young Jewish men have been attacked in Lyon and Sarcelles. On March 6, a Jewish pupil in Lyon was attacked and kicked in the face. Days earlier, in Sarcelles, a Jewish man suffered a dislocated shoulder after he was beaten by youths making anti-Jewish remarks. On March 3, two young men in Sarcelles were attacked in separate incidents, with one, the son of a local rabbi, suffering a broken nose.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.