European lawmakers urge E.U. to reinstate anti-Semitism definition
JTA reports on the meeting of leading European parliamentarians and Knesset Members during a meeting of the European Forum of the Knesset (EFK) in Krakow Poland, as part of the official International Holocaust Remembrance Day events.
The European parliamentarians were part of a delegation brought by the European Friends of Israel (EFI) organization and The Israeli-Jewish Congress (IJC), in conjunction with the Knesset. The meeting was held immediately following the Parliamentarians’ visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau, as part of the official Holocaust commemorations.
The parliamentarians called on the European Union, and specifically the E.U. Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) to “unequivocally stand behind its own working definition of anti-Semitism,” which it had dropped late last year.
Vladimir Sloutsker, Chair of EFI Management Board and President of IJC, stated: “There has never been a more pressing time for European Parliamentarians and elected officials to show a clear sign of their determination and willingness to fight anti-Semitism.”
The EFK was launched in November 2013, with the support of IJC and EFI, for the main purpose of strengthening relations between Israel and Europe. EFK is Chaired by Mr. Hilik Bar, Deputy Speaker of the Knesset.
Full article below.
KRAKOW, Poland (JTA) — Twenty-four European parliamentarians called on the European Union to reinstate its working definition of anti-Semitism.
The call was unanimously adopted on Tuesday by the lawmakers, who had traveled to Poland earlier this week to attend a ceremonial joint session with 58 Knesset members and dozens of counterparts from the Polish parliament on International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
The lawmakers said they will seek to have the E.U. Fundamental Rights Agency “unequivocally stand behind its own working definition of anti-Semitism” during a meeting with members of the European Forum of the Knesset, a caucus of Knesset members.
In 2005, the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia adopted a working definition of anti-Semitism which included demonization of the State of Israel and its comparison to Nazi Germany. But the Fundamental Rights Agency, the body which replaced the center, recently removed the definition from its website, saying it was unable to establish a definition.
“There has never been a more pressing time for European Parliamentarians and elected officials to show a clear sign of their determination and willingness to fight anti-Semitism,” said Vladimir Sloutsker, chair of the Brussels-based European Friends of Israel organization, which brought the European parliamentarians to Poland along with the Israeli-Jewish Congress.
[Featured image credit: Israel Bardugo Photography / Israeli-Jewish Congress]