May 23, 2019

An Antisemitism Crisis in France

“Tens of thousands of people rallied in Paris and other French cities on Tuesday night to protest a surge in antisemitic attacks, the latest being the desecration of a Jewish cemetery in the village of Quatzenheim, 10 kilometers from Strasbourg in Eastern France.

According to police, almost 100 gravestones were defaced with swastikas and anti-Jewish slogans. Political leaders from all French parties, including former presidents Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy, joined Jews and non-Jews in Paris’s Place de la Republique to condemn antisemitic acts under the slogan: “Enough!”

“Some people are provoking the authority of the state,” Sarkozy said. “It needs to be dealt with now and extremely firmly. It’s a real question of authority. Violence is spreading and it needs to stop now.”

French President Emmanuel Macron visited one of the 96 desecrated graves in Quatzenheim. “Whoever did this is not worthy of the French Republic and will be punished,” he said, walking through a gate defaced with a swastika. “We’ll take action, we’ll apply the law and we’ll punish them!” Macron also visited the Holocaust memorial in Paris with the heads of the French Senate and National Assembly.”

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