German anti-Semitism resolution delayed

Oct. 25, 2008 at 1:43 AM
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BERLIN, Oct. 25 (UPI) -- German lawmakers say political infighting has stalled plans for a resolution condemning anti-Semitism that was originally aimed to be passed by Nov. 9.

Members of the German parliament said they had hoped to pass the resolution against anti-Semitism by Nov. 9, the 70th anniversary of Krystallnacht, the Night of the Broken Glass, when thousands of Jews were killed by Nazis and numerous Jewish shops and synagogues were destroyed in 1938, Der Spiegel reported Friday.

The resolution was introduced as statistics cited by officials revealed that an average of one Jewish cemetery is vandalized each week in Germany and the Pew Research Center in Washington said a September poll suggested 25 percent of Germans hold an unfavorable view of Jews, up from 20 percent in 2004.

"I still have high hopes that we will be able to find a common language for the resolution, but it unfortunately won't be until after the 70th anniversary," said Gert Weisskirchen, a parliamentarian from the Social Democratic Party who helped organize the plan for a unanimous resolution. "This awful development (of rising anti-Semitism) demands that we approach it with the appropriate dignity. We can't let it descend into a political fiasco."

Lawmakers said the disagreement concerns a passage condemning anti-Semitism in pre-reunification East Germany that was objected to by the far-left Left Party.

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