Jewish schools and synagogues in Britain were warned to tighten security this week following last weekend’s terror attacks in Copenhagen.
National Policing Lead for Counter Terrorism Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley said in a statement this week the government has become more concerned “about the risk to the Jewish community in the UK.”
Security personnel “are in dialogue with Jewish community leaders about further actions that we will be taking, including more patrols in key areas,” Rowley added. Reports of anti-Semitic incidents in Britain more than doubled over the past year, according to the Community Security Trust (CST), which has reported security-related events in the British Jewish world since 1989.
Current funding for security around schools stands at $3.5 million, according to ABC News.
“It is very clear that Jewish institutions are targets,” European Jewish Association general director Rabbi Menachem Margolin told the news network. “Jewish institutions should be under surveillance 24/7.”
Not every Jew in Britain agrees, however, and some actually feel quite safe.
The president of the UK Board of Deputies of British Jews, Vivian Wireman, was quoted as saying “Jews in the UK are living in a safe environment. Although there is a danger of copycat attacks,” she acknowledged, she nevertheless maintained, “British Jews shouldn’t be too concerned.”
A group calling itself “Liberate Stamford Hill” has planned a rally on March 22 to protest the “Jewification of Great Britain.” The demonstration is set to take place in a district of northern London – Stamford Hill – that is home to the highest concentration of Orthodox Jews in Europe.