In Berlin, more than two anti-Semitic incidents per day continued to be counted in the first half of 2022. According to its own information, the research and information center for anti-Semitism in Berlin (RIAS) documented 450 anti-Semitic incidents on Tuesday between January and June. These included nine assaults, ten targeted property damage, ten threats and 417 cases of abusive behavior. The majority of the incidents were directed against Jewish, Israeli or persons or institutions perceived as such.
According to Rias, that was more than 120 fewer incidents than in the same period last year. At that time, 574 attacks were reported to the information center. But that's not a reason for the all-clear, explained project manager Benjamin Steinitz: "Our report shows that Berlin's Jews are continuously confronted with anti-Semitism in a wide variety of areas of life." Knowing about it burdens the everyday lives of many Jews.
According to Rias, the perpetrators often use Jewish or Israeli symbols or signs as an opportunity. On February 22, a man in Berlin-Mitte spat at a woman who was carrying a bag with a Star of David. On March 10, at a hostel in Prenzlauer Berg, a man knocked the kippa off a Jewish tourist's head and demanded that he say "Free Palestine." On May 29, two men in Neukölln approached a person wearing a Star of David necklace and pretended to attack them.
Those affected are also exposed to hatred and hate speech on the Internet. According to Steinitz, Jewish organizations based in Berlin were attacked with anti-Semitism an average of 1.5 times a day between January and June, including on social media platforms. According to Rias, a total of 299 anti-Semitic incidents were reported online in the reporting period.
According to the reporting office, most incidents beyond the Internet happened on the street, followed by cases in buses, trams, S-Bahn and U-Bahn trains. There were 27 anti-Semitic incidents here, including more than half of the registered physical anti-Semitic attacks.
In almost every third incident, the memory of the Shoah was warded off or trivialized in an anti-Semitic manner.
The Berlin anti-Semitism commissioner Samuel Salzborn attributes the significant decrease in incidents, among other things, to the fact that some meetings intended to be directed against Israel were banned in April and May 2022. In addition, the Berlin investigative and prosecuting authorities are very sensitive to the topic. These measures have increased the feeling of security among Berlin's Jews compared to previous years, despite continued hostilities, according to Sigmount Königsberg, the anti-Semitism commissioner for the Berlin Jewish Community.