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Germany records over 300% increase in antisemitic incidents

November 28, 2023

Since the Hamas terror attack on Israel on October 7, nearly 1,000 antisemitic incidents have been reported in Germany. Some of these acts include extreme violence and property destruction, a German association said.

https://p.dw.com/p/4ZVtT
German police officer in front of Kahal Adass Jisroel Jewish community center
Among the attacks RIAS documented in its report was a fire-bombing targeting a Berlin synagogue and community center Image: Markus Schreiber/AP Photo/picture alliance

The Federal Association of Departments for Research and Information on Antisemitism (RIAS), which records incidents of antisemitism in Germany, released its latest report Tuesday, documenting nearly 1,000 cases of aggression toward Jews in the country since the Hamas terror attack on Israel on October 7.

RIAS' most recent report tracked antisemitic incidents in Germany between October 7 and November 9, tallying an average of 29 per day.

Antisemitic graffiti, the marking of Jewish homes and institutions and brutal physical attacks were among the incidents recorded. 

Overall, the occurrence of such incidents has risen 320% year-on-year compared to the same period in 2022.

RIAS says during that period it looked at 994 verified cases — including three cases of extreme violence, 29 attacks, 72 incidents of targeted property destruction, 32 threats, 4 antisemitic mass mailings and 854 cases of injurious behavior.

The 854 cases of injurious behavior included 177 antisemitic gatherings.

Young German Jews refuse to be intimidated after attacks

Hamas propaganda contributed to antisemitic incidents in Germany, RIAS says

RIAS said disinformation contributed to the rise in antisemitic gatherings, noting protests after unverified reports of an alleged attack by the Israeli army on the al-Ahli hospital in Gaza on October 17. The US, Canada, France and other western countries have said intelligence points to Israel not being responsible for that attack.

Israel launched a military campaign against Hamas in Gaza after the militant-Islamist group's October 7 terror attacks. The military offensive by Israel has led to demonstrations in Germany, with reports of antisemitic actions and slogans being used during the events. 

"Hamas' propaganda successes have a greater influence on the number and course of demonstrations in Germany than the actions of the Israeli military itself," said RIAS Managing Director Benjamin Steinitz.

Hanna Veiler, president of the Jewish Student Union Germany, was quoted by the German DPA news agency as saying that the figures are alarming, but not surprising.

"Young Jews have been reporting non-stop about how much the antisemitism they perceive in their everyday lives has increased since October 7, especially in the university context."

js/wd (dpa, EPD)