Half of Britain's Jews Fear Future in Europe

Almost half of British Jewish people fear they have no long-term future in Britain or Europe, finds new poll.

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Elad Benari,

Pro-Palestinian Arab demonstrators protest against Israel in London
Pro-Palestinian Arab demonstrators protest against Israel in London
Reuters

Almost half of British Jewish people fear they have no long-term future in Britain or Europe, according to a new survey cited by AFP.

The poll of 2,230 British Jewish people by the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism (CAA) found that 45 percent feared Jews may have no future in Britain, and 58 percent were concerned they have no long-term future in Europe.

The online survey was conducted from December 23 to January 1, a period that preceded the attacks in Paris that targeted the Charlie Hebdo magazine and a kosher supermarket, leading France to increase security at Jewish schools and synagogues.

"The results of our survey are a shocking wake-up call straight after the atrocities in Paris," said CAA chairman Gideon Falter.

"Britain is at a tipping point. Unless anti-Semitism is met with zero tolerance, it will grow and British Jews will increasingly question their place in their own country," he added.

A quarter of those surveyed by the CAA said they had considered leaving Britain in the past two years.

The CAA said 2014 saw the most anti-Semitic incidents recorded by police since records began 30 years ago.

Official figures from London's metropolitan police showed anti-Semitic crimes more than doubled in the capital over the 12 months to November 2014, compared to the same period a year earlier.

Anti-Semitic views are not uncommon among British people, according to a separate study of conducted by pollster YouGov for the CAA.

A quarter of 3,411 adults surveyed by YouGov believed Jewish people chase money more than other British people.

Meanwhile, 17 percent thought Jews had too much power in the media, and 13 percent said Jews talked about the Holocaust to get sympathy. Overall, 45 percent of those surveyed believed at least one anti-Semitic statement.

The anti-Semitism in Britain took a turn for the worse during Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza last summer, with thousands taking part in anti-Israel protests. Those demonstrations have included pro-Palestinian Arab rioters vandalizing a Birmingham Tesco store out of rage over a refusal to boycott Israeli products.

In a similar incident, hundreds of demonstrators rioted outside the Kedem store in Manchester, in a series of clashes which culminated in dozens of death threats being hurled at the store's owners.

Recently, Danny Cohen, the BBC’s director of television, said that he was deeply troubled by the anti-Semitism in Europe in general, and in Britain in particular, adding that “I’ve never felt so uncomfortable being a Jew in the UK as I’ve felt in the last 12 months.”

Recent statistics show that hate crimes against Jews have risen 383% worldwide since 2013, including a 436% hate crime hike in Europe.