Under international human rights laws, Annika Hernroth-Rothstein is seeking refugee status and asylum in Sweden - her "own country," due to a fear of being persecuted.
Video courtesy of jn1.tv
Rothstein made the decision after becoming disenfranchised with Sweden’s growing anti-Semitism. Hate crimes against Jews have reportedly tripled since 2010 in the country. The city of Malmo has seen the biggest rise, and was the location of a bomb attack on a Jewish community centre just last year.
The traditional Jewish practice of kosher slaughter is banned in Sweden, while their parliament is due to debate a ban on the import and serving of kosher meat. The rite of circumcision has also come under attack.
A significant police presence is often required by Jews for protection during holidays, such as Rosh Hashana. Many Jews also fear being violently attacked should they wear a Star of David pendant or a yarmulke cap in public.
Around two weeks ago, on the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht, Stockholm’s Jewish community faced attack from both the far-right and hard-left. Neo-Nazi activists marched in solidarity with Greece’s Golden Dawn party, while left-wing activists waved Hamas flags and Palestinians scarves in protest.
Although Rothstein supports Jewish immigration to Israel, rather than move to the Holy Land she intends to fight for the rights of Jews in Sweden. By shining a light on Sweden’s failings towards Judaism, Rothstein now hopes her government will intervene on behalf of the Jewish community.