A top official in Germany warned the country’s Jewish community on Saturday to avoid wearing the traditional skullcap in public places in certain areas amid a rise in hate crimes.
Commissioner Felix Klein was speaking on the rise in anti-Semitic attacks across the country, and told the Funke media group that his opinion on wearing the skullcap — also called a yarmulke or kippah — has “unfortunately changed compared with what it used to be.”
“I cannot recommend to Jews that they wear the skullcap at all times everywhere in Germany,” Klein said in an interview without elaborating on what places and times might be risky.
Government statistics released earlier this month showed that the number of anti-Semitic and anti-foreigner incidents rose in Germany last year, despite an overall drop in politically motivated crimes. Attacks against Jews in Germany were up by 10 percent from 2017 to 2018, with reported violent cases up from 37 to 62 over the same period, according to German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle.