Israel Palestine Conflict

Surge in antisemitic, Islamophobic incidents in the US amid Israel-Hamas conflict

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Antisemitic and Islamophobic incidents including violent assaults and online harassment have spiked in the US since the Israel-Hamas conflict erupted on Oct. 7, two advocacy groups said Wednesday.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said it received 774 complaints of incidents motivated by Islamophobia and bias against Palestinians and Arabs from Oct. 7 to Tuesday. The group said this was the highest level since 2015.

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The total was almost triple 2022’s average number of complaints for a period of the same duration.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) said its preliminary data showed a 388% rise in antisemitic incidents in the US from Oct. 7 to Monday over the prior year. The group reported 312 incidents including harassment, vandalism and assault. About 190 of those were directly linked to the war between Israel and Hamas, ADL said.

CAIR cited an 18-year-old Palestinian man allegedly assaulted in Brooklyn; death threats against a mosque and a fatal stabbing of a 6-year-old Muslim boy in Illinois, who US authorities said was targeted for being Palestinian American.

ADL said complaints included violent messages, especially on online platform Telegram, and rallies where “ADL found explicit or strong implicit support for Hamas and/or violence against Jews in Israel.”

The US Justice Department has said it is monitoring rising threats against Jews and Muslims amid the conflict. President Joe Biden has condemned antisemitism and Islamophobia.

Palestinian militia group Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack killed over 1,400 people, Israel has said. Israel’s air strikes since on Hamas-controlled Gaza have killed over 6,500 as of Wednesday, according to the health ministry in Gaza. Reuters was unable to verify those figures independently.

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