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B’nai B’rith International organized the first event at its new Brussels office in the presence of its international leadership and European Union officials. Thursday’s lunch event marked the Washington-based organization’s closer involvement in European affairs.

“We intend to monitor issues of racism and xenophobia, and hope to strengthen the fight against them in this way,” said Adam Mouchtar, director of the new office. One issue discussed was the proposal by Germany, which currently holds the E.U.’s rotating presidency, to make the denial and trivialization of genocide punishable throughout Europe. “The German proposal is a good example of the ways in which the E.U. could, and should, be working toward a more inclusive Europe,” Mouchtar said.

The main speaker at the event was Yonah Alexander, senior fellow at the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies in Arlington, Va., who spoke about intolerance and violence in Europe. Two representatives of the European Commission also spoke. Among those in attendance was Jehudi Kinar, Israel’s ambassador to Belgium,

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