Photo Credit: Asher Schwartz

When 500 mainly German Muslims marched through Berlin chanting “Death to Jews” and “Death to Israel” in April, the protest was organized by the Israel-designated Palestinian terrorist NGO Samidoun.

Israeli Brig. Gen. (res.) Amir Avivi told the Jewish Press after Samidoun’s German branch organized the antisemitic protest on April,8 that “I expect the German government and the governments of the individual states to implement a firm and clear policy against any display of antisemitism in Germany.”


Avivi,  who is chairman and founder of the Israel Defense and Security Forum (IDSF),  said, “I expect the German government and the governments of the individual states to implement a firm and clear policy against any display of antisemitism in Germany.”

He added “We are monitoring this worrying trend of displays of Jew-hatred in Germany, sometimes disguised as Israel-hatred, much of which is sponsored by Iran, Hamas and other terror organizations. This must not be tolerated.”

Avivi continued that “Any organization that promotes antisemitism and has direct ties to other hateful terror organizations should be outlawed, first and foremost for the preservation of law and order in German society.”

When asked if Germany will outlaw Samidoun, a spokesman for the Federal German Interior Ministry, Björn Bowinkelmann, told the Jewish Press “We ask for your understanding that the Federal Ministry of the Interior and Community generally does not comment on deliberations regarding a possible ban, regardless of whether there is reason for such deliberations in individual cases.”

Bowinkelmann noted that “the Federal Ministry of the Interior handles it this way because otherwise there would be a risk that those potentially affected would act accordingly and the effectiveness of operational official measures could be impaired or thwarted.”

Samuel Salzborn, the antisemitism commissioner for the city-state of Berlin, told the Jewish Press that “The antisemitic character of the gathering…in Berlin is without question, based on the information available.”

The protest conforms with “rallies in recent years where anti-Israel [activities] and antisemitism are associated with open hate speech against Jewish women and Jews in Germany,” he noted.

“With that in mind, I have asked the public prosecutor’s investigative authorities to examine issues of criminal law regarding the gathering,” Salzborn said.

When asked whether the state of Berlin will outlaw Samidoun, Salzborn said that “bans on activities” are the responsibility of the Federal government.

Following the April 8 antisemitic protest, the authorities of the city-state of Berlin prohibited two additional demonstrations organized by Samidoun.

Israeli Defense Ministry’s National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing (NBCTF) stated, “The Samidoun organization was designated as a terrorist organization as it is part of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and was founded by members of the PFLP in 2012.” The EU and the U.S. have also classified the PFLP as a foreign terrorist organization.

Felix Klein, who is the German Federal Commissioner to combat antisemitism, has gone silent about the outbreak of genocidal antisemitism in Berlin. The Jewish Press sent a press query to Klein and his European counterpart Katharina von Schnurbein, the European Commission coordinator on combating antisemitism and fostering Jewish life. Von Schnurbein has declined to urge a ban of Samidoun and faced criticism for not recommending that the EU outlaw Hezbollah’s entire terrorist movement in Europe.

The Jewish Press sent a press query to von Schnurbein.  Both Klein and von Schnurbein participated in a recent conference titled “Actions Matter” regarding the need to combat antisemitism.Germany’s foreign ministry told the Jewish Press that a terror designation of Samidoun is the responsibility of the Interior Ministry.

Samidoun’s German branch is an aggressive anti-Israel organization. German law enforcement authorities have capitulated to Samidoun’s antisemitism over the years.

In 2020, Israeli violinist Ana Agre mounted a one-woman protest against a Samidoun demonstration in Frankfurt. The Frankfurt police issued her a notice to vacate the area due to her Israeli flag and she was ordered to appear for a police interrogation for her pro-Israel activity.

When she asked a police official in Frankfurt why she was not allowed to display an Israeli flag, the officer responded: ‘Because I don’t like it.’ ”

The pro-Samidoun activists approached Agre chanting slogans including “Nazis out.”

Agre wrote this reporter by email at the time: “I was very upset and confused because I had never dealt with the police and could not understand what I was accused of.

“There were no details or explanations in the letter from the police, only the accusation of insult.”


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Benjamin Weinthal is a Writing Fellow for the Middle East Forum.