Stressing that targeted attacks against members of the Jewish community in recent years in several Council of member States demonstrate that antisemitism is not a curse of the past, but today's threat and part of Europe's reality, the Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination urges governments and parliaments to consider the fight against antisemitism as a priority and their responsibility.
In a draft resolution which will be discussed by PACE at its spring session (Strasbourg, 18-22 April), on the basis of a report by Boris Cilevičs (Latvia, SOC), the committee calls for "strong political condemnation of antisemitism and its manifestations" which are "in contradiction with the fundamental values of the Council of Europe".
"Antisemitism finds its origin in deep-rooted prejudice in society against Jews, which will only be overcome with increased awareness-raising efforts," the rapporteur stressed regretting that “limited protection mechanisms and the partial implementation of anti-discrimination and antiracism legislation do not guarantee equality and safety for all”.
According to the committee, the legislative framework on combating discrimination should cover manifestations of antisemitism, such as public incitement to violence, hatred or discrimination, public insults, threats, desecration and profanation of Jewish property and monuments. The public denial, trivialisation, justification or praise of the Holocaust, of crimes of genocide and of crimes against humanity should be made a criminal offence, when it is not yet the case. The committee also called for the prosecution of political figures and parties for antisemitic statements and calls for hatred as well as the suppression of public funding of organisations and political parties promoting antisemitism.
Other measures proposed by the Committee concern the reporting of antisemitic and other hate crimes, the prevention of antisemitism, including in the media and antisemitic online hate speech. It also encouraged national parliaments to cooperate with the No Hate Parliamentary Alliance and the No Hate Speech Movement campaign.