Leaders of Jewish communities from all over the world gathered, for the first time, in a joint session with 22 special envoys, commissioners and coordinators for the fight against Anti-Semitism, in order to formulate a common strategy to curb the phenomena of anti-Semitism, racism, xenophobia, radicalization and hate speech. The Summit was organized by the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union and the World Jewish Council (WJC) in Bucharest on June 17 and 18, 2019. The WJC was organized by the Greek Jew, Leon Saltiel, WJC's representative to the United Nations in Geneva and coordinator for the fight against Anti-Semitism. 

Greece was represented by the special secretary of Religious and Cultural Diplomacy and special envoy for the fight against Anti-Semitism, Dr. Efstathios Lianos Liantis. On the sidelines of the Synod, he had bilateral contacts with the US Special Envoy, Elan Carr, the EU Coordinator, Katharina von Schnurbein, the German Commissioner for Jewish Life, Felix Klein, the Commissioner of the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg, Michael Blume, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria, Georg Georgiev, as well as high-ranking officials of the World Jewish Council and Jewish communities around the world. 

During the first day of work, the participants had the opportunity in the preliminary meeting to consider the issue of measures to combat anti-Semitism through the domestic and foreign policies of states. Afterwards, a joint session was held with members of the International Jewish Council, which was opened with a speech by the Romanian Foreign Minister. 

In the third part of the day's work, proposals were developed on the subject of state authorities and communities in the joint effort to eliminate Anti-Semitism. Lord Pickles spoke of the UK's example in adopting and implementing the IHRA's working definition of Anti-Semitism. Anna Boksitskaya and Mikhail Fedotov addressed the fight against anti-Semitism in Russia and the role of the state and civil society. The third talk by Ernest Herzog and Omer Barak was about the violent face of Anti-Semitism with the shift from online insult to physical violence. The work of the first day was concluded with a dinner hosted by the Prime Minister of Romania for the participating delegates, in the presence of many government ministers, the president of the Senate, ambassadors and other officials.

On the second day, the sessions took place in the Parliament building, where practical ways of combating Anti-Semitism were presented and the role of education and memory in this end was discussed. At the end of the Summit, the Presidency of the European Union issued an official declaration, in which it stated that the conclusion of the Summit demonstrates that there are significant challenges that must be addressed and that additional measures need to be foreseen in certain areas, with four specific objectives: 1) Improvement of dialogue and cooperation in order to establish the security of Jewish communities. 2) Promote the adoption of the non-legally binding definition of anti-Semitism adopted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance. 3) Funding research, education and preservation of the memory of the Holocaust, and 4) improving the recording and collection of data on hate crimes, including special training programs for the police and judicial authorities, as well as providing support to organizations who are actively involved in collecting data on hate crimes.

SOURCE: ATHENS - MACEDONIAN NEWS AGENCY, 19.6.2019