JUSTICE - No. 68

19 Summer 2022 to concrete action. The pledges were recorded and published, and both the Swedish government and the World Jewish Congress monitored their application during 2021.24 Action taken by the United Nations should also be noted. The UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, Dr. Ahmed Shaheed, has undertaken to update his 2019 Report on combating antisemitism during 2022 and before he completes his term of office. Additionally, the UN General Assembly adopted by consensus a resolution that condemns denial and distortion of the Holocaust. The resolution was moved by the Israel Ambassador to the UN on the 80th anniversary of the Wannsee Conference (January 1942) at which the Final Solution was agreed upon and coordinated.25 Conclusions “The heart of our action is to ensure that Jews across Europe can live their lives in accordance with their religious and cultural traditions. Because Europe can only prosper when its Jewish communities prosper, too. Because Jewish life is an integral part of Europe's history and of Europe's future.”26 These words illustrate the current situation confronting Europe. If Europeans and the European agencies wish to retain the confidence, and presence, of Jews, they must ensure the continuity of the Jewish communities, and provide a more welcoming environment. That means not only educating European youth about the horrors of the Holocaust, but also teaching them about the contribution Jews have made to Europe over the last two millennia, and which they continue to do. European institutions must adopt a more aggressive approach than hitherto, and provide the means by which Member states can develop their capacity and willingness to do so. It is true that 2021 witnessed an increased level of cooperation between European agencies and Jewish communities. Governments are now required to develop national action plans to combat antisemitism, either as stand-alone initiatives or as part of a plan to combat racism and racial violence. They are also required to appoint envoys or commissioners who can ensure that the plans reach a consistent and coordinated level. The commissioners may attend the EC Working Group on Antisemitism and participate in regular discussions with each other within the framework of the World Jewish Congress-convened, and EC-chaired, Special Envoys and Coordinators Combating Antisemitism (SECCA) forums.27 Governments have widened their focus and are now strengthening the capacities of Jewish communities and have adopted a new focus on educating European states about the background and contribution of their Jewish citizens. They have created new initiatives to assist states to pursue their obligations, such as the handbook for the practical use of the IHRA working definition of antisemitism; the NOA report cards system to enable states to measure their progress; and the IHRA toolkit. Nevertheless, governments have thus far failed to reconcile their declared focus on welcoming Jews’ continued presence in Europe with their policies of restricting Jews’ right to pursue their religious practices. Nor is there any recognition of the existing disparities between the internal aims of the EU and what translates as the antisemitic effects of their external actions toward Israel. Europe must resolve the inconsistency between their internal strategy on combating antisemitism and external strategy relations with Palestinian agencies and funding for NGOs aimed at Israel’s destruction that can promote antisemitism. The future of the Jewish presence in Europe will partly be determined by European responses to Jewish concerns about antisemitism.28 n Michael Whine is Senior Consultant to the World Jewish Congress, and the Member of ECRI in respect of the United Kingdom. He was a co-founder of the Community Security Trust, for which he worked for 35 years, latterly as Government and International Affairs Director. 24. “Outcome Document Pledges presented at the Malmö International Forum on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism,” Government Offices of Sweden (Oct. 13, 2021), available at https://www.government. se/4ad3b7/contentassets/7d3985b4106c41e69d69971953 3f16c0/outcome-document---pledges-presented-at-themalmo-international-forum-on-holocaust-remembranceand-combating-antisemitism.pdf 25. Holocaust denial, UNGA, 76th sess., A/RES/76/250, Jan. 25, 2022, available at https://documents-dds-ny.un.org/doc/ UNDOC/LTD/N22/230/12/PDF/N2223012.pdf?OpenElement 26. “Statement of President von der Leyen ahead of the International Day of Holocaust Remembrance,” European Commission (Jan. 26, 2022), available at https://ec.europa. eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/statement_22_542 27. “Katharina von Schnurbein co-chairs International Meeting of Special Envoys and Coordinators on Combating Antisemitism,” European Commission (May 4, 2021), available at https://ec.europa.eu/newsroom/just/ items/712071/en 28. Sergio DellaPergola and L. Daniel Staetsky, “The Jewish identities of European Jews: What, why and how,” p. 6, European Jewish Demography Unit, Institute for Jewish Policy Research (Dec. 2021), available at https://archive. jpr.org.uk/download?id=12831pdf

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