EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Two issues are drawing attention to the broad range of Belgian anti-Semitism, a problem that usually remains under the international radar. One is the trial of Mehdi Nemmouche, the alleged murderer of four people at the Brussels Jewish Museum in 2014. The other is the prohibition against unstunned ritual slaughter in the Flanders and Wallony regions. These cases are just the tip of the iceberg of Belgian anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism. There are also extreme cases of Muslim, political, academic, and trade union anti-Semitism. One can even find anti-Semitism in school textbooks.
Though anti-Semitism in Belgium is widespread and has many facets, it gets little international attention. Two current issues have changed this somewhat. One is the trial in Brussels of French citizen Mehdi Nemmouche, charged with killing four people at the Jewish Museum in Brussels on May 24, 2014. Nemmouche is a jihad veteran who fought in Syria.
The other issue is the prohibition against unstunned ritual slaughter in the region of Flanders, a ban that became operational at the beginning of this year. Most Jews in that region, many of whom are Orthodox, live in Antwerp. In the Wallony region, the same prohibition will be enacted in 2019. This prohibition also hurts Muslims who require halal meat, which, like kosher meat, comes from animals that have been slaughtered without stunning.