Anti-Semitic incidents in Austria up more than 80 percent

Cnaan Liphshiz

(JTA) — The number of anti-Semitic incidents reported in Austria increased by more than 80 percent last year, according to the Austrian Forum Against Anti-Semitism.

The forum said 465 incidents were recorded during 2015, over 200 of them being Internet postings hostile to Jews.

The total number of Internet postings reported to Austria’s constitutional protection authority as offensive remained stable in 2015, but the number of postings liable to be used in criminal proceedings doubled compared to 2014, an Interior Ministry spokesman told Reuters.

“The whole picture is terrifying,” Oskar Deutsch, president of the Jewish Communities of Austria, told the news agency.

There was a clear trend of increasingly hostile behavior by Muslims against the 15,000 Jews living in Austria, the Jewish community representative said.

“There is an increasing concern in our community that if the proportion of Muslims in Austria continues to rise due to immigration, due to the refugees, this could become problematic for us,” Raimund Fastenbauer said.

In several European countries, including France and the Netherlands, watchdog groups attribute most anti-Semitic incidents to immigrants from Muslim countries.

The Austrian Forum Against Anti-Semitism began monitoring anti-Semitic incidents in 2003.

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