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Tuesday, 18 June 2013
Page: 3223

Senator KROGER (VictoriaChief Opposition Whip in the Senate) (15:44): I, and on behalf of Senators Abetz, Birmingham, Payne, Ronaldson and Smith, move:

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) that although nearly 70 years have passed since the end of World War II and the Holocaust, antisemitism still exists,

(ii) the vital work of the London Declaration on Combating Antisemitism in drawing the attention of the democratic world to the resurgence of antisemitism in international affairs, politics and society, and

(iii) that more than 125 parliamentarians in over 40 countries have signed the Declaration;

(b) recognises the vast contributions made by the Jewish people to Australian society;

(c) expresses its solidarity with the Jewish people;

(d) affirms that antisemitic prejudice, rhetoric and hate campaigns, such as the Boycott, Divestments and Sanctions campaign, utterly contradict the democratic values Australian society and the Parliament hold dear; and

(e) encourages all senators, regardless of party or politics, to sign the Declaration and so assist to combat antisemitism across the globe.

I seek leave to make a short statement.

Leave granted.

Senator KROGER: The London Declaration on Combating Antisemitism, a declaration that asserts the need for international cooperation to fight anti-Semitism, is regrettably necessary today, just as it was 70 years ago. It is deeply disturbing that, whilst decades have past since World War II, when the world witnessed the holocaust, we are witnessing a resurgence in anti-Semitism across the globe that is manifesting itself in all sorts of ways. Only last week, I attended an event hosted by the Victorian state government to celebrate the 65th anniversary of Israel's Independence Day. Walking into that venue, I saw some 100 police inside and outside the doors. They were concerned about trouble that they had been advised was possible, and they were there to secure all—an extraordinary situation in Melbourne, a site where we have seen the BDS movement boycotting the Max Brenner chocolate business. I challenge all to expose those who engage in this racist behaviour and commend all coalition members and senators for supporting this.