French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has unveiled a 100-million-euro ($108-million) plan to fight rising racism and anti-Semitism, notably through tougher punishment.
“Racism, anti-Semitism, hate of Muslims, of strangers and homophobia are intolerably rising”, Valls said Friday in Creteil, a Paris suburb, scene of an anti-Semitic attack on a couple in their home in December.
One measure would make racism and anti-Semitism an aggravating factor in any crime or offense.
Other proposals focus on the Internet — through creation of a state unit in charge of surveillance of hate speeches— and specific actions in schools.
Anti-Muslim acts have increased sixfold following the deadly Paris attacks by Islamic extremists in January, according to the French Muslim Council.
Police statistics show that anti-Semitic acts doubled last year.