Thousands of Germans of various faiths don Jewish skullcaps to fight anti-Semitism


Thousands of Germans of various faiths don Jewish skullcaps to fight anti-Semitism

In protest of the recent anti-Semitic attacks in Germany, thousands of Germans on Thursday will take to the streets of Berlin wearing kippahs.

"On no account do we want this music prize to be a platform for anti-Semitism, contempt for women, homophobia or for belittling violence", it said in a statement.

The 21-year old Israeli man who was attacked said he was a non-Jew who comes from Haifa and that was wearing a kippah "as an experiment" to prove to a friend that Berlin is not anti-Semitic.

Schuster stressed the issue isn't only caused by Arab migrants, while Aiman Mazyek of Germay's Central Council of Muslims denounced the attacks and described anti-Semitism as a sin.

Head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany Josef Schuster warned Jewish people in the country against wearing the traditional caps, also known as kippah, after two young men wearing them were assaulted in Berlin.

"And I thank the Jewish community for organising today's event ... anti-semitism has no place in our city", he said. Anti-semitism is on the rise and not just that: "the statistics show us that xenephobia, fear of Muslims, everything is on the rise".

In March, the Central Council of Jews urged schools to keep track of religious bullying following reports that a young Jewish girl was allegedly harassed and threatened by Muslim fellow pupils at a Berlin primary school.

The remarks sparked outrage, with the Nazi-hunting Simon Wiesenthal Center accusing authorities of disappointing Jews' faith in German democracy. What's happening in Germany right now is not good. "This is not only about anti-Semitism - it goes along with racism, it goes along with xenophobia".

Party member Bjoern Hoecke previous year called Berlin's Holocaust memorial a "monument of shame" and said Germany should take a "180-degree" turn away from its guilt over World War II crimes.

However other Jewish representatives said Schuster's position was ill-informed, with European Jewish Association president Rabbi Menachem Margolin saying: "He is mistaken in the cure for this serious problem".

The International Auschwitz Committee, founded by survivors of the Nazi death camp, welcomed Wednesday's kippah demonstrations but said they must be part of a broader effort by German officials, teachers and average citizens.