Antisemitic crime increases in Germany
The number of antisemitic crimes in Germany rose by 2.5 percent last year despite an overall drop in politically motivated crimes, statistics showed on Tuesday, reinforcing fears about growing hostility after several high-profile attacks in Berlin.
Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said that 1,504 antisemitic offences were reported in 2017, up from 1,468 in 2016, though he said there had been fewer attacks on hostels housing refugees.
“It is not surprising that the so-called ‘imported antisemitic crimes’ are rising – even if at a lower level. But I want to make clear that almost 95 percent of antisemitic crimes in 2017 had a right-wing motive,” said Mr Seehofer.
Some politicians, including many in the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD), blame the influx of more than 1.6 million refugees and other migrants, many fleeing war zones in Syria, Iraq and beyond.
Mr Seehofer cited recent offences, including the bullying of Jewish children in school, an attack on an Israeli Arab who wore a Jewish kippa on a Berlin street and the awarding of a top music award to rappers accused of reciting antisemitic lyrics.