French President Emmanuel Macron has told Jewish leaders the country will adopt the IHRA definition as part of a crackdown on antisemitism.
He announced that France would recognise anti-zionism as a form of antisemitism and added that parliament would vote on a new law to combat online abuse.
“For the first time in many years, antisemitism is killing people again in France,” Macron told guests on Wednesday at the annual dinner of the CRIF umbrella of French Jewish groups.
He added that French authorities “did not know how to react effectively,” calling this a “failure.”
Earlier this month, French authorities reported a 74 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents in 2018 over the previous year.
Macron told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of the decision on the IHRA definition in a conversation Wednesday.
Parliamentarians in France have resisted the definition, which was adopted last year by the European Parliament and several European Union member states.
The move was announced one day after thousands of demonstrators, including two former French presidents, gathered in cities across France to condemn antisemitism.
The rallies followed several incidents of antisemitism in France, including the desecration of a Jewish cemetery in the Strasbourg area.
While life in Israel has returned to normal and hopes are high that Britain is set for a summer without restrictions thanks to vaccines, for billions around the world there is no such imminent light at the end of the tunnel. In the majority of countries around the globe, particularly the poorest, the vaccine rollout has barely kicked off.
That's why Jewish News, the leading source of news and opinion for the entire UK community, is throwing its full weight behind UNICEF’s VaccinAid campaign by using this platform usually reserved for encouraging donations towards our own journalism to instead urge our readers around the globe to perform the greatest mitzvah: saving a life.
We have never before done this for any charity fundraiser but it's hard to recall a campaign that affects so many people, and indeed an entire planet aching for a return to normality. Just like the Chief Rabbi and Rachel Riley, we hope to boost the mission to deliver two billion vaccines, 165 million treatments and 900 million test kits around the world by the end of this year.
Please donate as much as you can, in the spirit of the Talmudic sages: “to save one life is to save the world entire”