Denmark: 100s March Through Muslim Area to Protest Anti-Semitism
Hundreds of protesters wearing yarmulkas, Stars of David and other Jewish symbols marched through a predominantly Muslim neighbhorhood of the Danish capital of Copenhagen, in a march against anti-Semitism late last week.
Demonstrators included both Jews and non-Jews, and were protesting an alarming rise in anti-Semitism in the country which, like the rest of Europe, has seen simmering anti-Semitism boil over during the past few weeks as Israeli forces battle terrorists in the Gaza Strip.
Rasmus Yarlov, a Copenhagen city councillor said he joined the march in protest of the fact that the situation in Demark had gotten so bad that Jews were forced to hide their identity to avoid being attacked.
"We need to show that Jewish symbols and Jewish clothing is part of the streets in Copenhagen and should be allowed to move around freely, and not be seen as something that is abnormal and does not belong in the streets," he told CCTV-America news.
The choice of a Muslim neighborhood was due to the fact that the vast majority of anti-Semitism attacks in the Scandinavian country were committed by members of the growing Muslim immigrant community. Across Europe, rising anti-Semitism has been largely fueled by Muslim extremists, and the deadliest anti-Semitic attacks - such as the 2012 Toulouse Massacre and the recent shooting at the Brussels Jewish Museum - have been committed by radical Islamists.
European Muslims have often been accused of making no distinction between opposing Israeli policies and anti-Semitism. And the small group of Muslim pro-Palestinian protesters who turned out as part of a counter-protest appeared unfazed by the fact that their actions - aimed at a march protesting anti-Semitism - illustrated just that.
Counter-protesters, wearing keffiyehs and waving PLO flags, branded the march "provocative", with one woman claimed "that these people are supporting the genocide down in Palestine and that is definitely unacceptable."
Jewish community leader Jonatan Sousa, strongly disagreed with the assertion that the protest was provocative.
"No, it is definitely not provocative. calling this provocative is provocative in and of itself," he said.
"I'm not doing anything wrong! But the wrongfulness here is that I have to be scared. Somehow, walking with Jewish symbols I should have to be scared - that is the wrong thing, that is the provocative thing.