European Nations Establish New Forum to Combat Racism

The European Parliament has decided to establish a branch of the London-based Inter-Parliamentary Council against Anti-Semitism.

This action stems from a call for a common struggle against anti-Semitism, a move made earlier this month by Klaus Hansch, European Parliament president. Hansch was speaking at the opening session of Consultative Committee on Racism and Xenophobia.

The goals of the new branch will be to exchange information about incidents of racism, xenophobia and anti-Semitism; to raise public awareness about these phenomena’ and to act concertedly against them, officials said.

The branch will be chaired by British Labor legislator Glen Ford and will include 50 members of the European Parliament, the legislative body of the European Union.

The new body will be independent of the Consultative Committee on Racism and Xenophobia, which the European Union established last year. Jean Kahn, the president of the European Union Jewish Congress, heads that committee.

At an inaugural conference to launch the new branch, Hansch stressed the need for the European Union to play an important role in the fight against anti- Semitism.

One of the most important objectives of the new group will be to establish legislation applicable to all E.U. member states to combat both Holocaust denial and the distribution of anti-Semitic materials, Ford said.

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