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Austrian Government Announces News Measures to Counter ‘Orgy of Hatred’ Targeting Jews

A pro-Hamas demonstration in Vienna. Photo: Reuters/Andreas Stroh

In a bid to counter what she called the “orgy of hatred” targeting the Jewish community, Austria’s constitutional minister on Monday announced that the central European country’s strategy against antisemitism would be enhanced by a series of measures focused on the internet.

Addressing a press conference in Vienna, Karoline Edtstadler unveiled a package of 15 goals to reduce antisemitic agitation online. These include the use of AI to detect and combat antisemitic hate speech, a campaign across all media formats warning of the dangerous consequences of antisemitism, enabling the Austrian Communications Authority to impose stricter regulations on online platforms under the terms of Austria’s Digital Service Act, and organizing a summit sponsored by the federal chancellery to address antisemitism online that will include the relevant stakeholders.

Describing the measures, Edtstadler emphasized that “the internet is not a legal vacuum.”

The minister’s announcement came less than a week after the IKG, Austria’s Jewish representative organization, disclosed new data showing that 2023 was the worst year for antisemitism in Austria since it began maintaining records in 2008.

A total of 1,147 incidents were reported — a 60 percent increase on the previous year’s total of 719 incidents. The vast majority of last year’s incidents occurred after the Hamas pogrom in southern Israel on Oct. 7.

Edtstadler was joined at Monday’s press conference by IKG president Oskar Deutsch, who described the “immediate danger” facing Austrian Jews as “catastrophic.” Just over 10,000 Jews reside in Austria according to the Institute for Jewish Policy Research (JPR), a London-based think tank.

Deutsch bemoaned that in too many cases, online offenders avoided prosecution, arguing that “one or two precedents” would underline that “antisemitism is not a trivial offense.” He also called on the judiciary to prosecute relevant cases with greater urgency.

Austria launched its national action plan to combat antisemitism in 2021. Last year, a report on antisemitic attitudes commissioned by the Austrian parliament found that 15 percent of respondents manifested “severe” antisemitic attitudes, endorsing classic antisemitic stereotypes, denying the truth of the Holocaust or blaming Jews for their own persecution. A further 32 percent expressed “latent” attitudes, for example the belief that Israel’s elimination would result in peace in the Middle East.

The post Austrian Government Announces News Measures to Counter ‘Orgy of Hatred’ Targeting Jews first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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OCAD University student is seeking $1M in damages—alleging a lack of protection from threats and abuse

Samantha Kline, 22, presented photos of antisemitic graffiti she says targeted her.

The post OCAD University student is seeking $1M in damages—alleging a lack of protection from threats and abuse appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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Palestinian Islamic Jihad Releases New Propaganda Video of Israeli Hostage

Israeli hostage Alexander (Sasha) Trufanov as seen in a propaganda video released by Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Photo: Screenshot

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group on Tuesday released a short propaganda video featuring Israeli hostage Alexander (Sasha) Trufanov, 28, who was kidnapped by Palestinian terrorists during Hamas’ Oct. 7 massacre across southern Israel.

The 30-second undated video shows Trufanov, an Amazon employee, identifying himself and saying that he will soon discuss what has happened to him and other hostages in Gaza.

Similar videos have been released by terrorists groups in Gaza. Israel has lambasted them as psychological warfare.

Trufanov’s mother said in a video released by the family that she was happy to see her son after all this time, but “it was heartbreaking” that he had been a hostage for so long.

Trufanov was an engineer at the Israeli microelectronics company Annapurna Labs, which Amazon owns.

Hamas-led Palestinian terrorists abducted over 250 people during their Oct. 7 onslaught. Trufanov was kidnapped alongside his mother, grandmother, and girlfriend.

All three were released as part of a temporary ceasefire agreement negotiated in November. His father, Vitaly Trufanov, was one of the 1,200 people killed during the Hamas massacre.

“The proof of life from Alexsander (Sasha) Trufanov is additional evidence that the Israeli government must give a significant mandate to the negotiating team,” the Hostages Families Forum, which represents the families of the hostages, said in a statement.

More than 120 hostages remain in Gaza, which is ruled by Hamas. Islamic Jihad is a separate but allied terrorist organization in the Palestinian enclave. Both are backed by Iran, which provides them with money, weapons, and training.

Negotiations brokered by Qatar, Egypt, and the US to reach a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas in Gaza have been stalled for weeks.

The post Palestinian Islamic Jihad Releases New Propaganda Video of Israeli Hostage first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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Gal Gadot’s Action Movie Nabs Second Place on Netflix List of Most Watched Films in Second Half of 2023

Gal Gadot as Rachel Stone in a scene from the trailer for “Heart of Stone.” Photo: YouTube screenshot

Netflix released its engagement report that details the films with the most views from July 1 to Dec. 31, 2023, and Israeli actress Gal Gadot’s action thriller Heart of Stone secured the number two spot with 109.6 million views.

The film — starring Gadot alongside Jamie Dornan and Bollywood actress Alia Bhatt in leading roles — was the runner-up to Leave the World Behind, the drama starring Julia Roberts, Mahershala Ali, and Ethan Hawke that garnered 121 million views on Netflix.

Heart of Stone, directed by Tom Harper, was released on the streaming giant on Aug. 11 of last year. The action film is about international intelligence operative Rachel Stone, played by Gadot, who goes on a mission to protect an artificial intelligence system, known as The Heart, from falling in the wrong hands. The film was produced by Pilot Wave, a company founded by Gadot and her husband Jaron Varsano.

Gadot also stars in Netflix’s most popular film of all time, Red Notice, alongside Dwayne Johnson and Ryan Reynolds.

The post Gal Gadot’s Action Movie Nabs Second Place on Netflix List of Most Watched Films in Second Half of 2023 first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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