The German Interior Ministry has announced that the number of anti-Semitic incidents in the country has risen by four per cent since last year as some accuse the government of presenting the crimes as coming from right-wing sources rather than radical Islamists.
The number of anti-Semitic offences in Germany has gone up from 654 in 2016 to 681 this year according to the German Interior Ministry. The number of violent attacks has also increased, though the number of “hate speech” incidents has slightly decreased Die Welt reports.
The report comes after a request from German Green Party politician Volker Beck who noted the numbers only reflected, “the cases in which the persons concerned had dared to go to the police.” Beck said the true number of anti-Semitic incidents could be much higher.
The Interior Ministry noted that 93 per cent of the anti-Semitic offences came from far-right extremists, with the rest being divided between Islamic extremists and far-left extremists.
The data largely contradicts that of surveys of members of the Jewish community in Germany who say that Islamic extremism plays a far larger role than authorities care to admit.
Benjamin Steinitz, head of the Research and Information Center for Anti-Semitism (RIAS) in Berlin said that he sees problems with the government data. He noted that when investigators see slogans like “Jews Out” written on walls they often attribute it to far-right extremists despite it also being popular in Islamist circles.
Steinitz referred to a report from earlier this year that surveyed German Jews in which eight percent said they knew someone who had been a victim of violence in the last twelve months. According to the report, Muslims were seen as being responsible for 83 per cent of physical assaults and 62 per cent of verbal insults.
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German schools have also become mired in anti-Semitic incidents, particularly in the German capital of Berlin. Earlier this year a Jewish student was forced to switch schools because of physical and verbal harassment he faced at the hands of Muslim students.
It was also revealed by a report conducted by the American Jewish Committee (AJC) that the phrase” You Jew!” had become a common insult in Berlin schools with high populations of students from migrant backgrounds. The report also claimed that local mosque leaders were influencing students to the extent that they were attempting to enforce Islamic morality on school grounds.