German bill seeks deportation of migrants who express anti-Semitism
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German bill seeks deportation of migrants who express anti-Semitism

Conservative legislation being prepared for Holocaust Remembrance Day states, ‘Any who reject Jewish life, question Israel’s right to exist can not have a place in our country’

German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivers a statement to journalists on May 3, 2017. (John MacDougall/AFP)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivers a statement to journalists on May 3, 2017. (John MacDougall/AFP)

Germany’s ruling parties are preparing legislation that could see migrants who express anti-Semitic views deported from the country, the daily Die Welt newspaper reported Saturday.

The CDU-CSU conservative alliance led by Chancellor Angela Merkel hopes to present the new bill by International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27.

The draft legislation states that “absolute acceptance of Jewish life” is a “benchmark for successful integration” in Germany.

“Anyone who rejects Jewish life in Germany or questions Israel’s right to exist can not have a place in our country.”

Stephan Harbarth, deputy chairman of the CDU-CSU parliamentary group, told Die Welt that Berlin “must resolutely oppose the anti-Semitism of migrants with an Arab background and from African countries.”

Migrants found guilty of anti-Semitic speech could face deportation under the bill.

German officials reacted with outrage in December after protesters in Berlin burned Israeli flags to protest the US decision to recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital.

Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said Germany should appoint an anti-Semitism commissioner to counter growing hate speech against Jews and Israel from both its homegrown far right and the immigrant community.

“Every criminal act motivated by anti-Semitism is one too many and a shame for our country,” de Maiziere told the Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert said that although Berlin opposed the move by US President Donald Trump, it strongly condemned protests where “hatred” of Israel and Jews was expressed.

President Frank-Walter Steinmeier declared himself “shocked and shamed” by the incidents and said rejection of anti-Semitism was a “non-negotiable” condition for living in Germany.

A recent study found that anti-Semitism is rampant among Muslim refugees in Germany and requires urgent attention.

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