UK Jewish leaders welcome EU’s full membership of IHRA group

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

UK Jewish leaders welcome EU’s full membership of IHRA group

European Union joins body which formulated the new international working definition of Jew-hate

British Jewish representatives have welcomed the full membership of the European Union to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, during discussions in the Italian city of Ferrara on Thursday.

The IHRA, whose new working definition of antisemitism has been the focus of much debate around the world, said “the close working relationship between the IHRA and the EU is now formalised”.

It came after Katharina von Schnurbein, the EU Commission’s Coordinator on Combating Antisemitism, accepted the position of Permanent International Partner.

On the same day, Bulgaria was accepted as the 32nd full IHRA member state, while Portugal became an affiliate, during a conference attended by UK Special Envoy for Post-Holocaust Issues Lord Pickles, Holocaust Educational Trust chief executive Karen Pollock and Holocaust Memorial Day Trust chief executive Olivia Marks-Woldman.

“The Board of Deputies welcomes the European Union’s decision to join the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance,” said Board senior vice-president Sheila Gewolb. “It will give added weight to this important body which originated the internationally-recognised definition of antisemitism.”

She added: “While the UK may be leaving the EU, we are glad that both remain inside the IHRA to work together to preserve the memory of the Holocaust and tackle antisemitism. Some things truly should supersede national or party-political lines.”

Addressing the conference, Pickles said one of the key issues facing delegates was public indifference, in light of this week’s startling CNN/ComRes report, which showed a shocking lack of knowledge about the Holocaust across Europe.

Listen to this week’s podcast here:

Help perform the greatest mitzvah: save a life

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”

read more: