French President Emmanuel Macron spoke on Wednesday night at the annual dinner of France's Jewish umbrella organization, CRIF.
In his remarks, Macron said U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital was an "error" and that France has no plans to follow in his footsteps, reported The Associated Press.
The French leader said he did not think Trump has "helped with resolving the conflict" between Israelis and Palestinian Arabs by recognizing Jerusalem, calling the move "a real error in this context."
If France did the same, opined Macron, "we would lose this status of honest broker, which is the only useful one for the region" — a status that the U.S. can no longer enjoy.”
Macron also pledged to fight firmly anti-Semitism wherever it surfaces, whether in the street or online, and to protect the nation's Jews amid growing concerns about intolerance, according to AP.
"There are hatreds that are rising again, there are the worse kinds of crimes," he said.
"We have understood, with horror, that anti-Semitism is still alive. And on this issue our response must be unforgiving. France would not be itself if Jewish citizens had to leave because they were afraid," added Macron.
He pledged continued protection for Jewish schools and synagogues and other sites as well as a new government plan to fight racism and anti-Semitism online, which is notably spreading among young people.
France’s Interior Ministry released a report last month which found that while racist incidents ranging decreased overall in the country last year, there was a rise in violence targeting Jews and Muslims.
Violent acts targeting minorities increased, from 67 to 72 against Muslims and from 77 to 97 against Jews, the report said.