Rising anti-Semitism in Poland has moved the European Jewish Congress (EJC) to warn it has “grave concerns” over the “deteriorating relationship between the Polish government and the Jewish community.”
“There has been a distinct normalisation of anti-Semitism, racism and xenophobia in Poland recently and we hope that the Polish government will stem this hate and act forcefully against it,” EJC president Moshe Kantor said in a statement released Thursday.
The Brussel’s-based organization claims in the past year no senior Polish government minister has met with the leadership of Union of Jewish Communities in Poland, the democratically-representative organization of Polish Jewry.
This is not the first time the rise of anti-Semitism in Poland has been highlighted. As Breitbart Jerusalem reported, in January a study by the University of Warsaw’s Center for Research on Prejudice found acceptance for anti-Semitic hate speech — especially among young Poles on the internet — rose from 2014 to 2016 compared to previous years.
The Jewish community in Poland, with a population of 38 million, has fewer than 10,000 people.
Prior to the Holocaust, it boasted 3.3 million members, or around 10% of the Polish population. Up to 300,000 Polish Jews survived the war, but most then fled the country, many to Israel.
Despite the call for more dialogue between Poland’s Jews and the government, Poland’s chief rabbi, Michael Schudrich, said Jews still feel much safer in Poland than they do in parts of Europe where anti-Semitism is much stronger and sometimes violent, including France, Scandinavia and Hungary.
“For first time in many years people are not feeling 100 percent comfortable, as they used to,” Schudrich told the Associated Press on Thursday. “It’s not that the government supports this but we need it to be more vigilant in articulating their rejection of any form of anti-Semitism or racism.”
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