More than 100,000 march in Paris against soaring antisemitism amid Israel-Hamas war

Over 100,000 people marched in Paris to protest the rise in antisemitism in the wake of Israel’s ongoing conflict with Hamas in Gaza.

Driving the news: The march took place on Sunday, with representatives from several of the country’s political parties present, including Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne, President Emmanuel Macron’s party, and far-right leader, Marine Le Pen.
* French President Emmanuel Macron expressed support for the protest, calling on citizens to stand up against the resurgence of antisemitism.
* However, Jean-Luc Melenchon, leader of the far-left France Unbowed party, boycotted the march, arguing on a social media post that it would serve as a rally for those supporting the conflict in Gaza.

Reality check: French authorities have reported more than 1,000 acts against Jews across the country since the start of the Middle East conflict.
* On Sunday, Macron pledged that perpetrators will be prosecuted and punished.
* A total of 1,247 antisemitic acts have been counted since October 7, a significant increase over the total for all of 2022, according to the Interior Ministry.

The big picture: France, which has Europe’s largest Jewish population, has been grappling with the issue of rising antisemitism in the light of its own WWII collaboration with the Nazis.
* A sentiment of solidarity and defiance against antisemitism was expressed by demonstrators during the march.
* Several attendees expressed their relief at the large turnout and the sense of support it signified for France’s Jewish communities.

What they’re saying: Participants at the march expressed various sentiments, with one, Robert Fiel, calling the event “more than a duty.” Others noted the sense of support and unity it brought, describing the feeling as one of being “less alone.” Some relatives of those affected by the recent Hamas attacks also attended the march.

View original article on NPR
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