'From the river to the sea' chant to be crime in Austria

Germany looks to bar antisemites from gaining citizenship amid spike in incidents

Meeting Israel’s envoy, German interior minister says new bill excludes those who have committed anti-Jewish acts from gaining nationality, adds Hamas supporters to be tried

People wave Israeli flags during a demonstration against antisemitism and to show solidarity with Israel in Berlin, Germany, October 22, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
People wave Israeli flags during a demonstration against antisemitism and to show solidarity with Israel in Berlin, Germany, October 22, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

Germany will seek to block individuals who have committed antisemitic acts from ever gaining citizenship, the country’s Interior Minister Nancy Faeser said on Wednesday.

The minister said the new law tabled in the German parliament provides a “clear exclusion of antisemites,” in a statement posted following a meeting with Israel’s Ambassador to Germany Ron Prosor.

As Germany faces a spike in antisemitic incidents amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas war, Faeser said those who support the terror group would be “prosecuted with the full force of the law.”

Following Hamas’s brutal attack on October 7 on Israel and the subsequent Israeli declaration of war on the terror group in Gaza, police have increased security for Jewish institutions.

Last week, the Kahal Adass Jisroel community said its synagogue in Berlin’s Mitte neighborhood was attacked with two incendiary devices. Police confirmed the incident.

There have been several reported instances of Star of David symbols daubed on residential buildings in Berlin where Jewish people live, while Israelis living in the city have noted a rise in attacks and animosity from pro-Palestinian supporters.

Some 2,500 terrorists broke through the border into Israel from the Gaza Strip by land, air, and sea on October 7, killing some 1,400 people and seizing over 200 hostages of all ages under the cover of a deluge of thousands of rockets fired at Israeli towns and cities.

Israel launched an offensive it says is aimed at destroying Hamas’s infrastructure and has vowed to eliminate the entire terror group, which rules the Strip. It says it is targeting all areas where Hamas operates while seeking to minimize civilian casualties.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz said Sunday that he was outraged by the antisemitic agitation spreading to Germany, and warned at the inauguration of a new synagogue that the vow of “Never again” must be unbreakable.

On Sunday, more than 100 leading German corporations joined together to show their support for Israel and their opposition to antisemitism, the murderous October 7 onslaught.

In a full-page ad published in major newspapers in Germany with the headline “Never again is now,” the 106 undersigned companies, representing the bulk of the country’s economy employing millions of workers, denounced antisemitism and Jew hatred.

AP contributed to this report.

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