Protesters hold placards and flags during a demonstration, organised by the British Board of Jewish Deputies for those who oppose anti-Semitism, in Parliament Square in London, Britain, March 26, 2018..
(photo credit: HENRY NICHOLLS/REUTERS)
Jews in England and Wales are the single most targeted group for religiously motivated hate crime in those parts of the UK relative to the size of the Jewish population, new figures released by the British government on Tuesday have shown.
In the 2017/18 period evaluated by the UK Home Office using police data,12% of all religious hate crime was directed at Jews in England and Wales, while the total number of Jews amounts to a mere 0.5% of all the total population.
In effect, the number of hate crimes against the Jewish community was 24 times the size of its relative population.
In total, there were 672 offenses of religiously motivated hate crime against Jews in the 2017/2018 period.
The most number of hate crimes in absolute terms were perpetrated against the Muslim community with a total of 2,965 offenses, amounting to 52% of all religious hate crime.
The UK’s Muslim community is much larger than the Jewish community, comprising 4.8% of the population, although hate crimes against Muslims were still more than ten times the size of its relative population by nearly 10 times.
This is the first time religiously motivated hate crimes have been published by the religious group subject to the offenses.
Religious hate crime in the 2017/18 period in total was up 40% from the previous year, the Home Office report found with a total of 8,336 offenses.
In total, there were 94,098 hate crimes in 2017/18, 76% of which were recorded as race hate, and 9% of which were religious hate offenses.
Marie van der Zyl, president of the communal umbrella organization the Board of Deputies of British Jews, described the rise in religious hate crime as “shocking” and said it should serve as an urgent call to action.
“All of us – faith leaders, politicians and the media – should today step up our efforts to stamp out this cancer in our society,” said van der Zyl.
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