Anti-Jewish incidents rise by 20%

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The Independent Online
ANTI-JEWISH attacks in Britain have increased by about 20 per cent in the past year, according to a report published yesterday.

The number of reported incidents rose to 346 in 1993, with Jews having to endure assaults, threats, the desecration of cemeteries and synagogues and the widespread distribution of anti-Semitic literature.

Computer networks are also being used as worldwide links to spread anti-Semitic material, the report by the Institute of Jewish Affairs says. It feared the spread was going unchecked as the networks were almost inaccessible to law enforcement agencies. Anti-Semitic attacks have increased by 85 per cent in the past decade. Abusive behaviour accounted for about one-third of the incidents and damage to communal property about a fifth. There were about 40 assaults, including a very small number of life-threatening beatings. The publication of racist material made up about 15 per cent of the actions. The figures are almost certainly an under- estimate because many incidents go unreported. The statistics represent single incidents, which may in the case of literature, affect thousands of people.

The threat posed by the far right, particularly the British National Party, and Combat 18, a clandestine group with links to the BNP, was seen as a major cause of concern.

Anti-Semitism World Report 1994; Institute of Jewish Affairs, 79 Wimpole Street, London W1M 7DD; pounds 10.