Jewish life an essential and enriching part of European societies

11.09.2019 - Press release

Second Franco-German anti-Semitism consultations

The second Franco-German anti-Semitism consultations were held today in Berlin. Michaela Küchler, Special Representative for Relations with Jewish Organizations and Issues Relating to Anti-Semitism at the Federal Foreign Office, Dr Felix Klein, Federal Government Commissioner for Jewish Life in Germany and the Fight against Anti-Semitism, and Dr Josef Schuster, President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, held talks with their French partners on fighting anti-Semitism in France and Germany. Both countries want to work to ensure that Jewish people in Germany, France and the entire EU can live safely and without fear. Jewish life is an essential and enriching part of European societies that Germany and France have pledged to protect and foster.

Federal Government Commissioner Felix Klein said:

The fight against anti-Semitism, regardless what form it takes, is one of the Federal Government’s top priorities. All democratic forces in Germany are in agreement on this. The Federal Government feels a particular duty to the Jewish community and opposes all trends to forget or ignore the Nazi genocide of the Jews.

Germany and France want to continue sharing their experiences and approaches with each other in the future and where possible, to make mutual use of them. We have agreed to liaise closely with each other as regards Germany’s EU Presidency from July 2020 and Chairmanship of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance in 2020. Among other things, Franco-German endeavours will focus on implementing the conclusions of the Council of the European Union of 6 December 2018.

Special Representative Michaela Küchler said:

It is extremely important that Germany and France work closely together in the fight against anti-Semitism and also make this cooperation part of their work in the European Union and international bodies. We spoke today about how this can be achieved.

Background Information

Participants of the consultations at the Federal Foreign Office
Participants of the consultations at the Federal Foreign Office© Federal Foreign Office

Following the launch of Franco-German anti-Semitism consultations in 2018, talks have now been held for the second time at senior official level. At this year’s consultations, Frédéric Potier, Head of the French Interministerial Delegation to Combat Racism, Anti-Semitism and Anti-LGBT Hate (DILCRAH), gave a presentation on the new French bill to combat the dissemination of anti-Semitism in social media. The work of the OSCE and the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance to fight anti-Semitism at international level was also discussed. Dr Schuster provided detailed information on the Central Council of Jews in Germany project, Shalom Alaikum – Jewish-Muslim Dialogue.

A group of experts also met to discuss the topic of combating anti-Semitism in societies of immigration. Professor Eckhardt Fuchs and Dr Dirk Sadowski of the Georg Eckert Institute for International Textbook Research, Dr Martin Kloke of Cornelsen Verlag and Derviş Hızarcı, Anti-Discrimination Commissioner at the Berlin Senate Department for Education, Youth and Family Affairs, spoke with experts from France about experiences in the two countries with education programmes aimed at children and teenagers from an immigrant background.

--- Joint press release by the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community ---


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