Poll: Three out of Four French Jews Considering Leaving France

Poll: Three out of Four French Jews Considering Leaving France

Nearly 75 percent of French Jews who participated in a recent survey said they are considering emigrating, according to a JTA report.  

The survey by the Paris-based Siona organisation encompassed 3,833 respondents from the Jewish community across France.

The results paint a bleak picture for the future of Jewish life in France. More than half of respondents considering emigration cited anti-Semitism or a desire to preserve their Judaism as their motivation.

A disturbing number of French Jews have personally experienced anti-Semitism, though fewer are bothering to report the incidents to the police, as the complaints rarely lead to positive results.

Overwhelming majorities of respondents – over 90 percent – considered French institutions powerless to stop anti-Semitism, and implicated French mass media as being partly responsible for that nation’s pervasive anti-Semitism problem.

Of the 74.2 percent of respondents who said they are considering leaving, 29.9 percent cited anti-Semitism as their primary reason. Another 24.4 cited their desire to preserve their Judaism, while 12.4 percent said they were attracted by other countries. “Economic considerations” was cited by 7.5 percent of the respondents.

In total, a staggering 95.2 percent of all respondents said they viewed anti-Semitism as “very worrisome” or “worrisome.”

More than half, or 57.5 percent, of respondents, agreed that “Jews have no future in France,” while about half that number, 30.6 percent, said there is a future for Jews there.

Asked whether they had personally experienced anti-Semitic incidents in the past two years, more than one in seven, or 14.5 percent, replied in the affirmative.  Of those, only 21.2 filed a complaint with police; of those complainants, 27.6 percent indicated that their deposition had led to concrete results.

Fewer victims are even bothering to report anti-Semitic incidents to the police.  A similar survey from 2012 showed a quarter of Jews who experienced anti-Semitic incidents filed a complaint, Siona noted in a statement, adding, “The results give cause for concern.”

Ninety-three percent said the French state had no efficient means for countering “Islamic exclusionist and pro-Palestinian propaganda,” whereas 93.4 percent said French mass media are partially responsible for France’s anti-Semitism problem. Roughly three-quarters said French Jewish institutions were helpless to stop anti-Semitism. 

French immigration to Israel has rapidly increased in recent years, and quadrupled in the first quarter of 2014 from the same period a year earlier.


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