Anti-Semitism: Klein calls for universities to intervene

After the recent attack on a Jewish student in Berlin, the Federal Government's anti-Semitism commissioner, Felix Klein, once again called for consequences.

Anti-Semitism: Klein calls for universities to intervene

After the recent attack on a Jewish student in Berlin, the Federal Government's anti-Semitism commissioner, Felix Klein, once again called for consequences. “In its higher education law, the state of Berlin has clearly obliged universities to take action against anti-Semitism,” said Klein to the editorial network Germany (RND). “Now it must be a matter of consistently and concretely implementing the legal framework that has existed in the country for a long time and taking decisive action against hostility to Israel and hatred of Jews on campus.” The Science Senator and the university management must act.

At the weekend, 30-year-old Jewish FU student Lahav Shapira was hospitalized with broken bones in his face. A 23-year-old pro-Palestinian German fellow student is said to have hit and kicked him in the nightlife district in Berlin-Mitte. The Berlin public prosecutor's office is investigating the accusation of grievous bodily harm; the act is currently classified as both anti-Semitic and in connection with the Middle East conflict, it was said.

After the violent act, the university management was criticized for not taking anti-Semitic incidents and fears of Jewish students seriously. There were loud calls for the alleged perpetrator to be deregistered. University President Günter Ziegler said that they wanted to discuss with politicians whether exmatriculations “should be made possible in particularly extreme cases in Berlin”.

Berlin's Governing Mayor Kai Wegner (CDU) and Science Senator Ina Czyborra (SPD) announced a common line to protect Jewish students. If the current legal options are not sufficient, universities must be given additional, comprehensive instruments to ensure this protection, they explained after a joint discussion. This also includes a possible reform of the current higher education law.

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