Antisemitic attacks 'exploded' in France since Israel-Hamas war began, says interior minister

A man walks by Stars of David tagged on a wall Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2023 in Paris.
A man walks by Stars of David tagged on a wall Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2023 in Paris. Copyright Michel Euler/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved.
By Euronews with AFP
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Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin also announced that nearly 500 people had been arrested for such offences, 102 of whom are foreigners.


France's Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin says that more than 1,000 antisemitic attacks have been carried out in the country since the start of the Israel-Hamas war on 7 October, with hundreds of people arrested. 

"The number of antisemitic acts has exploded", said the Minister, during an interview on France 2. Of the 486 people arrested, 102 were foreigners, he added.

France’s Jewish population, estimated at more than half a million, is the largest in Europe and the third-biggest in the world, after Israel and the US.

Paris police chief Laurent Nuñez said on Sunday there had been 257 anti-Semitic acts in the Paris metropolitan area alone, with 90 arrests. 

He said there is no typical profile related to the attacks.

"We find all profiles, young kids who say very serious things", but also "people who are more rooted in defending the pro-Palestinian cause and who get out of hand."

Stars of David have been spray-painted on Jewish homes, resembling the way Jews were forced to wear stars during the Nazi regime.

In Lyon, a woman was stabbed in her home this weekend in what is being treated as an antisemitic attack by prosecutors. Her life is not in danger and no arrests have been made.

Hamas attack: 40 French killed in Israel

The total number of French victims killed in the Hamas terror attacks on Israel on 7 October has risen again, with 40 people now reported dead, with eight still missing including hostages, French PM Elisabeth Borne announced on Monday. 

"Discussions are underway, firstly with the Israeli authorities, but also with partners in the region", because "our priority is of course the release of the hostages", said Elisabeth Borne, reaffirming France's demand for a "humanitarian truce".

On the subject of the increase in anti-Semitic acts, she said she was "fully aware (of) the anguish" of French Jews "faced with this upsurge", and assured them that the government was doing "everything to protect them".

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