Romania hosts key antisemitism conference
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Romania hosts key antisemitism conference

Representatives from more than 12 countries sent government co-ordinators to Bucharest for special meeting on combating Jew-hate

Jenni Frazer is a freelance journalist

Twelve countries attended the combating antisemitism event
Twelve countries attended the combating antisemitism event

More than 12 countries sent their government co-ordinators to Bucharest for a special conference on combating antisemitism, organised by the World Jewish Congress and the government of Romania.

The meeting, the first professional conference of its kind, assembled representatives from countries including Bulgaria, Poland, Russia and Azerbaijan, to sit with leaders of Jewish communities.

Under the banner of the International Meeting Of Special Envoys and Co-ordinators Combating Antisemitism, the group was addressed by keynote speakers Elan Carr from the United States and Katharina von Schnurbein, the European Commission’s first co-ordinator on combating antisemitism.

Talks focused on exchanging working practices and efforts to have additional government adopt the definition of antisemitism of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, or IHRA.

Ms von Schnurbein said that although there had been a rise in antisemitism in many countries, there had been notable successes. These included the code of conduct signed in 2016 by Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft and the European Commission requiring the firms to delete the majority of reported illegal hate speech within 24 hours. Compliance had risen to 72 per cent in February from 28 per cent in 2017, she added.

Ultimately, Ms von Schnurbein said: “We must aim for our next survey to show Jews are more secure and see their future in Europe,” where they were free “to express their identity, including support for Israel.”

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