France creates anti-hate crime office amid Anti-Semitic wave

Photo: EPA French Minister of the Interior Christophe Castaner

France's Interior Minister Christophe Castaner announced Thrusday the creation of an office tackling hate crimes, after 107 Jewish graves were desecrated with swastikas in eastern France on Wednesday.

“The office will coordinate police and judicial work to hold responsible those who commit anti-Semitic, islamophobic, and anti-Christian hate crimes”, Castaner said in Twitter. In his tweet, the Minister added that authorities will fight in the forefront to prevent antisemitism from poisoning the French Republic.

The hate crime incident in Westhoffen occurred a few hours before France adopted a legally non-binding resolution modelled on the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of antisemitism, that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism.

French President Emmanuel Macron condemned the incident, saying that “Jews are and make France,” through a tweet on Tuesday. The President also added that “Those who attack them, even their graves, are not worthy of the idea we have of France.”

However, the vandalism in France is not unprecedented.Although the country has the largest Jewish population in the European Union, anti-Semitic incidents across it have seen a 74% rise from 2017 to 2018, according to police reports.

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