French President Vows to Fight Anti-Semitism in 2015

December 31, 2014  

French President Francois Hollande said on Wednesday that the fight against racism and anti-Semitism will be his national cause for 2015, according to The Associated Press (AP).

In a speech in honor of the 2015 year, Hollande pointed out “the rising, worrying threats” of terrorism and fundamentalism and urged the French not to succumb to fear.

France has seen a sharp rise in anti-Semitism in recent years, and it flared particularly in 2014 and during  Operation Protective Edge, with violent protests in Paris

In one incident, hundreds of Muslim extremists attacked a major synagogue in Paris, provoking clashes with Jewish youths who rushed to defend the site and worshippers trapped inside.

At the beginning of December there was a shocking robbery and rape attack committed against a young Jewish couple in Paris, which led French politicians to condemn the steep rise of anti-Semitism.

Just last week, automatic gunfire was sprayed at the David Ben Ichay synagogue on Paris’s 3 Danjon Street. Several days later, a similar incident occurred against a kosher restaurant in the French capital.

France led the list of countries from which Jews made aliyah to Israel in 2014, with almost 7,000 new French immigrants, more than double the 3,400 who came last year.

The sudden increase comes partially as a response to the skyrocketing of anti-Semitism in the country, and has led the Jewish Agency to advance programs encouraging and facilitating aliyah for French citizens. 

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