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European Rabbis Train In Self-Defense, First Aid After Attacks

The training of dozens of rabbis was organized by the European Jewish Association at an annual conference in response to recent attacks in Copenhagen and Paris.

Posted on February 24, 2015, at 6:30 p.m. ET

Several dozen rabbis in Europe took part in self-defense and first aid training Tuesday, prompted by concerns of rising violence and anti-Semitism in the region.

Petr David Josek / AP

The training was part of an annual conference organized by the European Jewish Association and held this year in Prague.

Petr David Josek / AP

Rabbi Menachem Margolin, general director of the association, said the training was planned in response to the recent attacks in Copenhagen and Paris.

In a statement, he called for more action by government officials to increase security around synagogues and other Jewish institutions."We call on European governments, as well as EU institutions, to heed our calls for the establishment of a pan-European task force in order to increase security around Jewish institutions and enhance education against the rampant anti-Semitism," he said.
Petr David Josek / AP

In a statement, he called for more action by government officials to increase security around synagogues and other Jewish institutions.

"We call on European governments, as well as EU institutions, to heed our calls for the establishment of a pan-European task force in order to increase security around Jewish institutions and enhance education against the rampant anti-Semitism," he said.

As part of the training, the rabbis were given knives to practice fending off an attack, the Associated Press reported.

Petr David Josek / AP
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Petr David Josek / AP
Petr David Josek / AP

The basic training also included first aid.

Petr David Josek / AP

"It's very important," Binyomin Jacobs, chief rabbi in the Netherlands, told the AP. "I'm very happy with this. Happy and sad that it is necessary."

Petr David Josek / AP
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