Malcolm Hoenlein, Vice Chair of the Conference of Presidents
Malcolm Hoenlein, Vice Chair of the Conference of Presidents Flash 90

The Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations has praised key international moves to combat growing worldwide anti-Semitism.

“We applaud the numerous national and international bodies that, in the face of rising anti-Semitism around the globe, have stood up and demonstrated that combating Jew-hatred is among their top priorities,” Dianne Lob, Chair, William Daroff, CEO, and Malcolm Hoenlein, Vice Chair, said in a statement.

They said that “unconscionable” vandalism earlier in October of the the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum underscored why combating anti-Semitism was so critical.

The European Commission’s recently released EU Strategy on Combating Antisemitism and Fostering Jewish Life “can be a bold step forward in the fight against anti-Semitism” as it “clearly affirms the centrality of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) Working Definition of Antisemitism to the EU’s work and identifies Israel-related anti-Semitism as a major issue. It also supplies us with strategies that we can learn from here in the United States,” they said.

The Conference of Presidents applauded the appointment by the Organization of American States (OAS) of Fernando Lottenberg, a leader of the Brazilian Jewish community, as its first Commissioner for Monitoring and Combating Anti-Semitism.

They were also optimistic that the French Senate’s adoption of the IHRA working definition of anti-Semitism sent a signal that France was serious about ensuring a future for its Jewish community.

“In a country with the third-largest Jewish community in the world and an unfortunate history of anti-Semitic incidents, this adoption serves as an essential step toward safeguarding Jewish lives, protecting the community from bigotry, and forging a new future for the French Jewish community,” they said.

The Conference of Presidents welcomed “these important steps in the global fight against Jew-hatred.”

Calling the IHRA definition “an essential part of efforts to combat anti-Semitism,” they said that its widespread adoption shows an international consensus around the definition.

“IHRA unites liberal and conservative governments, universities, NGOs, cities, towns, and sports teams in the belief that one must define anti-Semitism to effectively combat it,” they said. “We are encouraged to hear about these efforts across the world and hope that they signal that there is broad consensus in support of the IHRA definition and importance of its use.”