Mel Gibson's controversial movie The Passion Of The Christ has been cited by a report as the cause of an upsurge last year (04) in Canadian anti-Semitic attacks, now running at a record pace.

The LEAGUE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS OF B'NAI BRITH, releasing its 2004 audit of anti-Semitic attacks in Canada, says last year's media coverage of Gibson's film and its alleged depiction of Jews as the "CHRIST killer" led to an often violent spike in attacks against the Canadian Jewish community.

The B'nai Brith study finds, "Whereas only nine incidents in 2003 had religious connotations to the story of Jesus' death, there were 32 such incidents in 2004, nine of them in February when the movie opened and a further 15 in the three months following its release."

In a statement, B'nai Brith Canada vice president FRANK DIMANT says incidents of anti-Semitism last year reached an all-time high and were becoming more violent, according to trade publication the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER.

17/03/2005 03:03