More than 2,000 wore skull caps at a rally in Berlin April 25 to show their support of the German Jewish community following last week’s attack on two Jewish men. Similar rallies took place in cities across Germany.
“Today the kipa is a symbol of the Berlin that we would like to have,” Berlin Mayor Michael Müller told the crowd in front of the Jewish community center in western Berlin. It is, he said, “a symbol of tolerance.”
That attack prompted the head of the Central Council of Jews, Josef Schuster, to advise Jews not to wear kippas in big cities. Schuster also called on Muslim groups to stand up to anti-Semitism. "There can be no tolerance of intolerance," he said.
Germany's Central Council of Muslims and Turkish groups have backed the rallies. “If you want to fight Islamophobia, then you can’t tolerate antisemitism either. And we know where anti-Semitism ended up in German history,” Gokay Sofuoglu, head of the Turkish Communities in Germany, told Berliner Zeitung.
The assault is the latest in a series of incidents indicating increased anti-Semitism in the country. Jewish students report being bullied in school and a 2017 study commissioned by the German parliament found the country averaged four anti-Semitic incidents per day.
Germany has appointed an anti-Semitism commissioner, former diplomat Felix Klein, who starts work next month.
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