Pope Francis - Copyright AGF s.r.l. / REX

Antisemitism 'neither human or Christian,' says Pope Francis

Pope Francis has described the persecution of Jews as "neither human or Christian" as he addressed an audience in Rome.

The Pope said: "I would like to make a separate note. The Jewish people have suffered so much in history, they have been chased away, they too have been persecuted.

"In the last century we saw so many brutalities against the Jewish people, and we were all convinced that this was over. But today the habit of persecuting the Jews, brothers and sisters, is here reborn. This is neither human nor Christian."


He continued: "The Jews are our brothers and should not be persecuted, understand?"

His comments come after a reported significant rise in antisemitic attacks in Italy, particularly online.

"Since the beginning of the year to the end of September, we recorded about 190 anti-Semitic incidents, about 70 per cent online," according to Milan based Foundation Jewish Contemporary Documentation Centre. The total incidents for the whole of last year were 197 and 130 for 2017.

A recent survey by ComRes last year showed that antisemitic stereotypes were alive and well in Europe with more than a quarter of Europeans polled believing Jews had too much influence in business and finance.

Meanwhile, a third of Europeans in the poll said they knew just a little or nothing at all about the Holocaust, the mass murder of some six million Jews in lands controlled by Adolf Hitler's Nazi regime in the 1930s and 1940s.


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