The number of anti-Jewish acts of violence has increased. The Federal Criminal Police Office recorded a total of 2,639 anti-Semitic crimes in 2022, including 88 acts of violence. This emerges from a response from the federal government to a small question from the Vice President of the Bundestag, Petra Pau (left). The answer is available to WELT.
The number of violent crimes, such as dangerous bodily harm or extortion, has increased significantly compared to 2021 - at that time there were 63 cases. There has been a small overall decrease in the continued high number of anti-Semitic crimes; There were 3,028 in 2,021. In the past four years, however, the investigating authorities have noticed an increase in anti-Semitic crimes, some of them significant, and the number is still very high. Sedition of the people dominates among the crimes, as well as the use of symbols of unconstitutional organizations, such as the swastika. There is also property damage, insults, desecration of cemeteries. In 2022, 1597 suspects have been identified so far.
"Increasing anti-Semitism poses a threat to our entire society," says Pau WELT, "example of this are the multiple attacks on synagogues in the last year, the many desecrations of cemeteries and the numerous Holocaust denials in the conspiracy milieu."
Pau has been querying the figures for each quarter for years. In the fourth quarter of 2022, there were 507 anti-Semitic crimes, including 17 violent crimes. The number of unreported cases is likely to be even higher because, as in the previous queries, there were late reports in the statistics for the previous sections of the year. The Federal Ministry of the Interior currently lists 653 anti-Semitic crimes for the third quarter of 2022; in October 2022, the ministry still recorded 306 cases here.
These extreme discrepancies annoy Pau. Timely recording and correct classification of the cases by the investigative authorities is required. "We need to raise police awareness of anti-Semitism," said the Vice President of the Bundestag. "Where there is no understanding of forms of discrimination and enmity, these cannot be adequately recorded either." When asked by WELT, the Federal Ministry of the Interior emphasized that it was constantly working on such sensitization among police officers.
Most of the crimes can be attributed to right-wing extremism. A look at the last quarter of 2022 shows this as an example: Eight violent crimes and 408 other criminal offenses could be attributed to the "right-wing" phenomenon - one violent act to the "left-wing". In addition, eleven criminal offenses and four violent offenses were assigned to the area of “foreign ideology”, including an arson attack on a synagogue in Bochum, and eleven offenses to the area of “religious ideology”. Four violent crimes and 59 other crimes could not be attributed to any motivation.
"Anti-Semitism is becoming more violent," says Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. The numbers reflected the experience of Jews in Germany. "It doesn't stop with words and damage to property, but the violence is increasingly directed against Jews themselves," Schuster told WELT.
The national strategy against anti-Semitism and for Jewish life adopted by the cabinet has met with a positive response. The President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Josef Schuster, explains to WELT how one can take action against Jew hatred.
The Central Council has been pointing out this development for years. Violence against Jews is mostly carried out by right-wing extremists, while hostilities often come from people with a Muslim background. "We finally need a clearer stance against anti-Semitism, regardless of the threshold of criminal law, to counter it."
"It is a shame for our country how much anti-Semitic hate speech is still being spread today and how often Jews are still being attacked and attacked," said Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD). It is shameful when corona deniers attach a yellow star and downplay the Holocaust. In addition, there is "an increasingly loud and increasingly visible Islamist-influenced anti-Semitism that openly propagates hatred against Jews and against the State of Israel," says Faeser WELT.
“This requires very consistent police intervention. Anti-Semitic crimes must have clearly noticeable consequences for the perpetrators.” This is an “essential task of the security authorities” and a goal of the recently adopted “National Strategy Against Anti-Semitism and for Jewish Life”.
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