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Kosovo to Adopt IHRA Definition of Anti-Semitism

“As a victim of genocidal actions & ethnic cleansing, [Kosovo] understands too well the weight of discrimination & hate.”
[additional-authors]
September 18, 2020
PRISTINA, KOSOVO – June 28, 2020: A Kosovo flag waves next to the statue of Kosovo’s late President Ibrahim Rugova on June 28, 2020 in Pristina, Kosovo. President Hashim Thaci, who was the former political leader of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), has denied allegations from a Hague-based prosecutor that he committed war crimes during the 1998-99 conflict with Serb forces. Thaci’s indictment led to the postponement of a White House meeting between the leaders of Kosovo and Serbia, which refuses to recognize Kosovo’s independence. (Photo by Ferdi Limani/Getty Images)

Kosovo Minister of Foreign Affairs and Diaspora Meliza Haradinaj announced in a Sept. 14 tweet that Kosovo will be adopting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism.

Her tweet stated, “In today’s #Kosovo Gov meeting, I proposed @TheIHRA
non-legally binding working definition of #AntiSemitism. Its adoption today lists [Kosovo with] its strategic allies.

“As a victim of genocidal actions & ethnic cleansing, [Kosovo] understands too well the weight of discrimination & hate.”

 

StandWithUs praised Kosovo’s decision in a tweet.

“An important step!” the Jewish group tweeted. “Thank you Kosovo for standing up to #antisemitism!”

The IHRA definition of anti-Semitism states, “Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

The IHRA definition of anti-Semitism includes the demonization and delegitimization of Israel as well as holding the Jewish State to a double standard. It adds that anti-Semitism also includes “holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” and that “criticism of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country cannot be regarded as antisemitic.”

The IHRA currently has 34 members, including the United States and Israel.

Kosovo’s announcement regarding IHRA comes after the country established ties with Israel on Sept. 4; Kosovo and Serbia also announced that day that they would be moving their embassies to Jerusalem.

However, the European Union (EU) warned both countries on Sept. 11 that their EU membership statuses could be threatened if they follow through on their pledges to move their respective embassies to Jerusalem.

“There is no EU member state with an embassy in Jerusalem,” European Commission spokesman Peter Stano said. “Any diplomatic steps that could call into question the EU’s common position on Jerusalem are a matter of serious concern and regret.”

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