([London] Times) British Jews apply for foreign passports as ‘insurance policy’

Thousands of British Jews have applied for foreign passports since 2016, driven mainly by a desire to retain EU citizenship after Brexit but also by fears over rising antisemitism and the prospect of Jeremy Corbyn coming to power.

New figures obtained by The Times show that more than 3,600 Britons have applied for German nationality under a 2015 scheme inviting the descendants of those driven out on religious, racial or political grounds by the Nazis to reclaim citizenship, with most applications from Jewish people.

Michael Newman, of the Association of Jewish Refugees, said those who fled the Third Reich for Britain might find it “emotionally or psychologically difficult” to reclaim German citizenship, but their children and grandchildren wanted to enjoy freedom of movement after Brexit. Some had also raised fears of rising antisemitism.

More than 180 British Jews of Sephardic heritage have applied for Portuguese passports and more than 50 have been granted Spanish passports under 2015 schemes to restore citizenship to descendants of Jews persecuted in the 15th century. The Jewish Community of Oporto said it received “thousands” of inquiries from British Jews.

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Posted in England / UK, Judaism, Religion & Culture

One comment on “([London] Times) British Jews apply for foreign passports as ‘insurance policy’

  1. Pageantmaster ن‎ says:

    After the expulsion of the Sephardic Jews from Spain and Portugal following the wicked terrors of the Inquisition, the kidnapping of their children and forced conversion, some of them made their way from Amsterdam to London where they set up their businesses as traders and gold and silver merchants. A Synagogue in Bevis Marks was built looking to all intents on the outside, and also [apart from religious furniture] inside as well like a Wren church. There is some suggestion that Wren was involved in the design, as is the claim that the oak roof timbers were donated from broken up men-of-war by Queen Anne and the great golden chandeliers donated by the Jews of Amsterdam.

    The community of Jews in the UK flourished, starting many of the banks which bankrolled the expanding agricultural and industrial growth of the UK in the world and through the Rothschilds financing the British defence in the Napoleonic Wars and enabling us to weather the French-organised Continental trade embargo on the UK [plus ça change].

    Persecution on the Continent in the 19th and 20th Centuries brought more Jewish refugees to the UK including Sigmund Freud and Albert Einstein as well as those who came as children on the Kindertransport.

    The UK has a history of welcoming refugees and in so many instances that generosity and compassion has also been a blessing. Like the Jews the Huguenots [French Protestants persecuted under Louis XIV] were welcomed to the UK, and so brought advanced building techniques, silk weaving and gold and silver smithing to boost the UK economy as well as as starting what are now some of the world’s largest banks.

    It is very sad to see the Jewish community feeling under threat here, and I hope that this fear is dispelled and they feel more safe in what is their home.