Macron, who spoke at a dinner attended by leaders of the Jewish community in Paris on Wednesday, criticized a “resurgence of anti-Semitism unseen since World War II.”
(February 21, 2019 / JNS) French President Emmanuel Macron announced that he would crackdown on the “scourge” of anti-Semitism in his country, just days after tens of thousands gathered to protest the rise in anti-Semitic incidents in the country.
Macron, who spoke at a dinner attended by leaders of the Jewish community in Paris on Wednesday, criticized a “resurgence of anti-Semitism unseen since World War II,” which the French leader said is not only happening in France but in “all of Europe and most Western democracies.”
The president also added that “anti-Zionism is one of the modern forms of anti-Semitism.”
Macron also spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by phone on Wednesday, where the French leader told Netanyahu that he would adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism. Netanyahu expressed his appreciation for the decision, the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement.
The World Jewish Congress welcomed the move by Macron, saying that “This is just the beginning of a long road ahead. Adopting this definition of anti-Semitism must be followed by concrete steps to encode into law and ensure that this is enforced.”
Both Germany and the United Kingdom have adopted the IHRA definition, with the European Union also adopting an amended version of the definition.
The moves by Macron took place the same week as tens of thousands of people engaged in approximately 70 rallies across the country to reject anti-Semitism and show support for French Jews, who have reported a 74 percent increase in anti-Semitic attacks in the last year.
The rallies, held under the motto “That’s Enough,” were attended by representatives of all the major religions in France and supported across the political spectrum.