London, Aug 4 (IANS) Anti-semitic incidents rose by 11 per cent in the first six months of 2016 compared with the same period in 2015, according to figures issued on Thursday.
The overall figure of 557 cases of malicious acts was the second highest ever recorded during a January-June period, the data issued by British charity organisation Community Security Trust (CST) showed.
There was no obvious trigger for the increase, said the organisation, which provides security to the UK Jewish community. Two years ago, the war in Gaza led to a big rise in anti-Semitic incidents in Britain, the Guardian reported.
But the biggest increases this year were recorded in April, May and June, months when anti-Semitism in the opposition Labour party was the subject of widespread media coverage.
Racism and xenophobia were part of the campaign discourse in run-up to the referendum on June 23 on Britain’s future in the European Union.
The most common type of incident recorded involved verbal abuse of Jews in public, the Guardian reported.
Other types of anti-Semitism included graffiti, abuse via social media, threats, damage and desecration of Jewish property and leaflets. There were 41 violent anti-Semitic assaults among the 557 incidents, a 13 per cent drop on the comparative 2015 period.
More than three-quarters of the incidents were recorded in London and Manchester, the two largest Jewish communities in the UK.
In London there was a 62 per cent increase in incidents, whereas Manchester saw a 54 per cent fall, the Guardian reported citing the figures.