US Capitol Building
US Capitol BuildingThinkstock

A group of members of the House of Representatives announced on Tuesday that they were launching a Bipartisan Taskforce for Combating Anti-Semitism, in a move meant to respond to the recent upsurge in anti-Semitism witnessed worldwide.

The members of Congress who are to serve as co-Chairs of the Taskforce and lead initiatives to stem the rise of anti-Semitism globally are Reps. Chris Smith (NJ-04), Nita Lowey (NY-17), Eliot Engel (NY-16), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27), Kay Granger (TX-12), Steve Israel (NY-03), Peter Roskam (IL-06), and Ted Deutch (FL-21).

"Around the world, we are witnessing an alarming rise of anti-Semitism that is dangerous and complex," wrote the co-Chairs together with a statement announcing the new initiative. "Over the past few years, Jewish schools, synagogues, and even homes and property have been targets of anti-Semitic violence."

The co-Chairs added, "Jewish populations are facing increased levels of hatred, frequently under the guise of political differences or other alibis, but in reality it is solely because of their faith. It is the responsibility of everyone who believes in basic universal liberties and freedoms to condemn this trend and work together to root out the hatred which underlies anti-Semitism."

Addressing the efforts they intend to make to fight the phenomenon, they concluded "we look forward to working with our colleagues in Congress to find innovative solutions that match the 21st century face of this age-old bigotry."

In particular, the Taskforce aims to inform members of Congress about the danger of anti-Semitism, and to guide the Executive Branch, foreign leaders and civil society organizations in ways and means of halting the racist hatred.

Promoting remembrance of the Holocaust, in which the genocidal Nazi regime murdered six million Jews, will be another goal of the Taskforce as it seeks to confront anti-Semitism.