update deskAntisemitism

French parliament to vote on Israel hatred as a form of anti-Semitism

The resolution also calls on the government to join other European countries in formally adopting the working definition of anti-Semitism used by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.

The Palais Bourbon, where the French National Assembly meets. Source: Wikimedia Commons.
The Palais Bourbon, where the French National Assembly meets. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

France’s parliament on Tuesday will vote on a draft resolution that says hatred of Israel is a form of anti-Semitism.

The draft resolution that will be put before the National Assembly in Paris was proposed by Sylvain Maillard, chair of the assembly’s Antisemitism Study Group.

The resolution also calls on the government to join other European countries in formally adopting the working definition of anti-Semitism used by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.

According to the IHRA definition, “anti-Semitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

In an open letter to National Assembly president Richard Ferrand in October, 39 organizations warned against passing the resolution.

They argued that a separate definition of anti-Semitism would “weaken the universalist approach” to combating all forms of racism, as well as compromise the “defense of freedom of expression and assembly for groups and activists that must be allowed to defend the rights of Palestinians and criticize Israel’s policy without being falsely accused of anti-Semitism.”

Among those who signed the letter was Malik Salemkour, president of France’s Human Rights League, which was founded in 1898 to combat the anti-Semitic persecution and trial of French-Jewish army captain Alfred Dreyfus.

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