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Merkel vows to fight antisemitism

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) has condemned the anti-Semitic slogans at rallies in German cities held against Israel's Gaza offensive.


Such remarks were an "attack on freedom and tolerance, and the attempt to undermine our free and democratic basic order" she was quoted as saying on Wednesday. "This can not and will not be accepted."


At pro-Palestinian demonstrations in Berlin, Frankfurt and other cities slogans like "Jew, Jew, cowardly pigs - and come out to fight alone" were chanted. It is feared that there will be further abuse in the next few days in already authorized rallies. The police announced tougher action.


Merkel also insured: "We will continue to advocate for the safety of our Jewish citizens." She added: "The security authorities are taking every attack on Jewish institutions and against individuals very seriously. Anti-Semitic crimes are consistently pursued with all legal means."

Anti-Jewish sentiment growing in Germany

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In many German cities, demonstrations against Israel have turned into vocal anti-Jewish protests. "We are witnessing an explosion of violent hatred against Jews," said Dieter Graumann, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. He urged politicians for stronger action.


The focus of the demonstrations started against the Israeli government's action against the people of Gaza. So far, there are 600 dead, many of them civilians.Now, the protests include anti-Jewish chants and hate-slogans against Israel - no matter whether in Essen, Göttingen and Berlin. "Zionists are fascists", "child murderer Israel" or "Down with Israel" was chanted.


In Berlin, police and prosecutors investigate whether the slogans were ethnically and therefore punishable. In addition, the police had to protect Jews from attacks.


On Saturday, a Jewish couple got massive threats when they moved near a pro-Palestinian demonstration. The man was identified as a Jew because of his Kippa. "Nazi murderer Israel", "fucking Jews, we'll get you!", shouted the crowd.


In Essen, eight people participating in the "peace demonstration for the Middle East" were arrested. Many participants chanted slogans against Israel. Later, 200 demonstrators attacked a pro-Israel rally; using bottles.

Berlin: Will police arrest Imam after hate sermon against Jews?

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An-Nur (Light) Mosque in Berlin had invited a very special guest preacher on the occasion of the recent Friday prayer. The Danish Imam Abu Bilal Ismail is known as a preacher with a simple primitive worldview. His reputation was demonstrated once again during his sermon last Friday: "... O God, destroy the Zionist Jews…kill them to the last," he said in Arabic to faithful crowd.


Abu Bilal's words revolve around the current Gaza conflict. "The Zionist Jews," he referred to as "child killers that make women widows" and those "who attack Gaza with everything they have." God would "bring the earth under their feet to the quake."


"Such a call would be as sedition under Section 130 of the Criminal Code (Criminal Code, note) to condemn, "says Burkard Dregger (CDU), Member of the Berlin House of Representatives and Speaker for integration policy. "I have therefore filed a complaint with the Berlin police."

Erdogan party "longs for Hitler"

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Turkish prime minister has made recently several antisemitic statements, saying among others that "Israeli crimes in Gaza are more barbaric of Hitler's". It seems the Turkish leader has special sympathy to the Nazi dictator. An indication of this can be found in his party's newspaper Yeni Akit, which published today the image of Adolf Hitler as the centerpiece for its daily word game, and the phrase “We long for you” [Seni arıyoruz] as the answer for the puzzle.

Shocking anti-Jewish demo in Berlin

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During this protest, held Saturday in Berlin, demonstrators chant: "Jew, Jew, you cowardly bastard, come out and fight alone!"


See the video of this protest here


Is there a future for Jews in Europe?

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A month after the fatal shootings at the Jewish Museum of Belgium in Brussels, the head of the Belgian Jewish community has warned that European Jews should prepare for further attacks.

"I think every Jewish community in the world today has to be prepared for one type or another of such incident," said Dr. Maurice Sosnowski, community leader of 40,000 people. "From what I've heard from all kinds of terrorism experts, this event will probably will happen about five times in Europe in the next two years, so that means everyone has to be prepared."

Four people, including an Israeli couple, were killed in the May 24 shooting outside the museum. A week later, a Frenchman of Algerian roots, with reported links to radical Islamic groups, was arrested in connection with the attack.


Following the attack, Sosnowski said he had demanded that the government help fund security costs in buildings and institutions that may be attacked in the future because of their ties to the Jewish community. This includes 50 buildings in Antwerp and 30 in Brussels, the two main centers of the local Jewish community. Now the Belgium government is investigating how much it is going to cost. It is important to note that in several European countries, these costs are covered up by the government.


Although in recent months there has been a rise in the number of Belgian Jews making aliyah to Israel, Sosnowski said that, in absolute terms, the numbers were insignificant, i.e. relatively a small number. He said the increase was not necessarily linked to increased anti-Semitism or to the attack of last month, but rather the crisis of the economy.


When asked if he felt that the Jews have a future in Europe, he said, "If there is no future for the Jewish people in Europe, there is no future for democratic societies in Europe. It is not only a question of the future of the Jews, but the future of all societies around the world. "

International press focus on "new" antisemitism in France

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The Washington Post, the New York Times and the Guardian have been looking at the resurgence of anti-Semitism in France.


Dieudonné , Jean-Marie Le Pen , Mehdi Nemmouche , Mohammed Merah , Youssouf Fofana. What do they have in common? American and English newspapers have published for several days stories on the "new antisemitism" that grows in France. The New York Times stressed the rapidly rising number of Jewish emigrants who left France for Israel . The daily quoted Taieb Nizard, a 32 year old woman, mother of two children who explained: "I love France and this is my country, but I am disgusted. In Israel there is an army that will protect us. Here, I do not see a future for my children . "


"The French anxiety illustrates the general anxiety of European Jews who fear for their safety and their future," told the New York Daily Cwajgenbaum Serge, a French who is the Secretary General of the European Jewish Congress in Brussels. " If this situation continues, there will be an acceleration of Europe departures," he adds.

According to the Washington Post, the success of antisemitic is reflected by Dieudonné who made this as his trademark, his main message over the years and formed a political movement which is a symptom of a much wider problem of French society. The "new antisemitism" is the result of the convergence of four key factors. Namely, the classical search for a scapegoat in times of economic crisis, the growing strength of the far-right nationalist, the deterioration of relations between blacks and Jews and growing tensions with the growing Muslim population in Europe. But in Western Europe, "no nation has seen deteriorating climate for Jews like France ."


Anti-Semitism and anti-Semitic acts had not disappeared in Europe since the end of World War II. There were two waves especially in the 1980s and early 2000s which were related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But it was movements affecting a negligible part of the population.


Now, it is a French, Mehdi Nemmouche , who is the main suspect in the killing in May at the Jewish Museum in Brussels. This is the most violent anti-Semitic act since in 2012, when Mohammed Merah , another French, shot three children in a Jewish school in Toulouse. France, which has the largest Jewish community in Europe has seen anti-Semitic acts increased by 40% during the first three months of the year to reach 140. Three weeks ago, two young Jews who came out of a synagogue in Créteil were beaten . An almost regular news item.


A recent study by the American Jewish organization – the Anti-Defamation League - suggests that France now has the highest percentage of population in Western Europe with anti-Semitic prejudice: 37% against 8% in Great Britain, 20% in Italy and 27% in Germany. "For the Jewish leaders, this is related to the radicalization of young French Muslim population and the constant attacks by the French media on Israeli policy towards the Palestinians , "wrote the Washington Post.


But the daily also acknowledges that the situation is more complex than that. Anti-Semitism has become more socially acceptable and Dieudonné and Jean-Marie Le Pen helped to illustrate this.

Paris synagogues under threat

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Two men pointed what was looked like firearms at police stationed outside a Paris synagogue last Saturday. This is one of several anti-Semitic incidents that have happened lately in or near the French capital.


The episode occurred outside the synagogue on Julien Lacroix Street in eastern Paris, according to a report posted on Sunday on the website of the National League for Vigilance Against anti-Semitism.


According to the report, two men on motorcycles moved toward the police officers when one of them took out what appeared to be a handgun, pointed it at one of the police officers and shouted at him “bang bang.” His partner did the same with what looked like an AK-47 rifle before escaping. The synagogue was empty at the time.


Also Saturday, various objects including a knife, large stones, sticks and studded boards were found in the interior yard of a synagogue in Garges les Gonesses, a northern suburb of Paris. The projectiles reached the back yard where children were playing at the time. Apparently, the objects were thrown down at the synagogue from apartments around the place of worship, BNVCA wrote. The synagogue was not damaged and no one was hurt. A report was filed with the police.


New exhibition on life of Jews in Westphalia

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Westphalian Jews and their neighbors are the focus of an exhibition at the Jewish Museum of Westphalia in Dorsten. The large special exhibition to be held from 26 October 2014, will look at how Jewish families in 19th and 20th century lived in the rural and urban communities in the region and how the neighborhood was shattered by Nazism.

"We want to see the issue tracking out wide. Because in many Westphalian villages Jews were very much involved in associations," says museum director Dr. Norbert Reichling from the findings of the research "History" project, whose standing behind this exhibition.

The exhibition is financed in part by the FO Cultural Foundation as the Jewish Museum of Westphalia required external financial support to implement the comprehensive project.

Anti-Semitic incidents around the world

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Last week, there were incidents of anti-Semitic graffiti in Canada, France and the United States, and there were attacks on Jewish institutions in Romania.


Following are the details:


- Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. "No-Jews" phrase and a swastika with red spray were found in seven locations around the area of Quadra Street and Tolmie Avenue.

- Seine-Saint-Denis, Paris, France. Anti-Semitic phases were found painted on the outside wall of the Aubervillers school, belonging to the Jewish community.

- Sofia, Bulgaria. The words "Death to the Jews" and a swastika were written on the bulletin board of the Central Synagogue in the city. Thanks to the recordings of security cameras, four people aged 19 and 20 years old were arrested in connection with this act.

- San Francisco, California, United States. A swastika and other anti-Semitic phrases, including "Heil Hitler" in black ink were sprayed on a poster that marked the shared leadership of the Congregation Beth Israel Judea and Or Shalom Jewish community.

- Sighisoara, Romania. A firebomb was thrown at an ancient synagogue in the city, causing minor damage.

- Chicago, USA. A fair-skinned man, 1.80 m. in height and 70 kg weight began shouting "kill the Jews" showing a swastika during a "kosher" festival organized in the "Anshei Emet" synagogue. Some witnesses said he was wearing a black cap with a swastika on his back, and a balaclava for skiing that completely covered his face.

- Ploiesti, Romania. Strangers threw stones at the windows of the local synagogue, destroying them.


Lebanese Columnist: Israel - reason for anti-Semitism

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The Lebanese Columnist Jihad Al-Khazen continues his attack on Israel and the Jews. The Columnist, who is a regular writer in the popular al Hayat daily, said in the past that the "Jewish Religion Is a Fairy Tale".


And on June 13, 2014 he published an article accusing Israel for the reason of the world's anti-Semitic sentiment.


In his article he refers to a worldwide survey on anti-Semitism and says that if he was asked he would answer positively for the question: Are the Jews in America determine the US policy towards the Middle East region.


He also mentions the huge influence of the Jews on the international business and media but claims it is for their skills and thus he doesn't consider this claim to be anti-Semitic.

Anti-Semitic body established in Morocco

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A group of Moroccan Berbers created an organization dedicated to combating anti-Semitism and strengthening cultural ties with Israel.


The Moroccan Observatory of anti Semitism, founded last week, is led by the Berber activist minority rights, Omar Louzi, with two other Berbers according to an article published Thursday in the online edition of the Moroccan newspaper Ya Biladi.


According to Louzi, the idea is to stop anti-Semitic attacks in mosques and elsewhere against the Jews and their culture.


Louzi plans to organize trips to Israel for Moroccans in order for them to visit their holy places, particularly in Jerusalem.


The initiative comes amid heated debates in Morocco regarding their relatively friendly relations with Israel. Last year, the five leading political parties in the kingdom, including the Islamist party in power, jointly organized two bills to prohibit trade with Israeli companies.


French imams gather at the Jewish Museum in Brussels

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French imams gathered Monday for hours with members of the Belgian League against anti-Semitism at the Jewish Museum in Brussels to salute the memory of the victims of the May 24's shooting attack, according to La Libre Belgique .


That day, Mehdi Nemmouche, a Franco-Algerian 29 who has been radicalized in prison, killed four people in the building. Strong symbolic moment of the gathering: a prayer during which the representatives of the two communities held hands before a minute's silence, then enlighted candles for the victims.


Hassan Chalghoumi, imam of Drancy (Seine-Saint-Denis) went to Brussels with his colleagues from the Conference of the Imams of France . This man is regularly the target of harsh criticism by Islamists on the internet mainly for his stance against the burqa and against the pro-Palestinian demonstrations and his friendly relations with the Jewish community. "We need the majority of Muslims to break their silence and say that we have nothing to do with this type of individual," said Hassan Chalghoumi. "I also encourage parents to interact more with young people. If I am here, it is also to show that the Muslim community supports the bereaved families. Because we are all victims. Do not associate Islam with the mentally ill (attacker). He chose himself this way. "


The initiative of French imams particularly affected Philippe Blondin, president of the Jewish Museum in Brussels: "It is (...) a beautiful gesture of openness. I welcome them with a lot of emotion. "


The alleged killer at the Jewish Museum in Brussels, Mehdi Nemmouche, was arrested May 30 at the bus station of Marseille's Saint-Charles, while on a bus from Amsterdam via Brussels.


Paris police fail to stop attacks on Jews

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Another case of anti-Semitism in France: two young Jews were attacked two days ago. The event took place, Saturday, when 15 teenagers of African origin attacked two 17 year old Jews with kippah on their heads. According to the Israeli daily Maariv, they were sprayed with tear gas.


The representative of the commission to combat anti-Semitism in France reported the event. According to reports, the local mayor visited the site of the attack with the police. Victims of the attack filed a complaint after being discharged from hospital.


The chairman of the Committee to Combat Anti-Semitism, Sami Gozlan, asked the authorities to do everything possible to find those aggressors.


In recent months there have been several cases of anti-Semitic attacks in France; just less than a month ago a Jewish woman was attacked by a man in his fifties in a bus stop in Paris, two Jewish brothers reportedly dressed in “traditional” clothes have been attacked near a synagogue also in the Paris area, and a Jewish man was verbally assaulted while walking to the subway in Paris.

Belgian militant calls for further attacks on Jews

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Ezeddine Bounekoub Kebir, from Antwerp went to fight in Syria, and now he calls via Facebook to young Muslims to follow the example of the shooter at the Jewish Museum in Belgium and calls for futher attacks, Gazet van Antwerpen reported Thursday. "May Allah convince more young people to follow the example of the person who committed the attack at the Jewish Museum. Martyrdom is not only in Syria but also in Belgium. Become a thorn in the eye of the enemies of Islam," he wrote in his message.


Bounekoub is a notorious member of the extremist Sharia4Belgium organization. He is linked to terrorism and still in Syria.

EU governments should protect Jews

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About two years ago, two children and a teacher died in a Jewish school attack in Toulouse carried out by Islamist terrorist and in July 2012, seven people who arrived at the airport of Burgos (Bulgaria) as part an Israeli tour group died in a bombing attack. And on May 24, the day before the election to the European Parliament, four people killed at the Jewish Museum in Brussels in a terrorist attack - an attack that was anti-Semitic motivated according to Belgian judicial authorities.


A study published a few months ago by the Vienna-based EU Fundamental Rights Agency shows that physical attacks, hate speech against Jews and graffiti on Jewish institutions and symbols rise again throughout Europe.


Thus, Jews in Europe are alarmed and worried quite some time now.


"Great speeches are useless," says Ariel Muzicant, Vice-President of the European Jewish Congress. "After each anti-Semitic incident, the security measures are strengthened for a short time, but then you go back to business as usual."


In comments to a German newspaper conversation, he demands from the EU governments' urgent remedy more police officers and security personnel to protect Jews and Jewish institutions, or to support Jewish communities financially to pay for security bodies ".


He stresses: "European Commission and the European Parliament were repeatedly invited to develop appropriate policies and laws. And it came to nothing."


Last year, an OSCE conference was held in Berlin, and dealt with the protection of the Jewish communities. "Even after that, nothing happened," laments Muzicant.


He called for a "rigorous legislation in the European Union, against all forms of hatred and incitement as a criminal offense". And he noted: "We know the potential perpetrators, but only one can act forcefully against them."

The dark past of Audi

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The Audi predecessor company Auto Union has exploited during the period of National Socialism thousands of forced laborers. This is the result of documents Audi given itself for a study commissioned about the Nazi past. An Audi spokesman confirmed the report.


The study comes to the conclusion that the Audi predecessor companies "integrated into war economic interests in a scandalous degree in the concentration camp complexes". After the merger with the NSU-engine plant, the Auto Union was renamed Audi in 1985.


In seven concentration camps, which were set up by the SS for Auto Union, therefore, more than 3700 prisoners were exploited as forced laborers. More than 16,500 forced laborers who were not interned into concentration camps had also worked for Auto Union in the Saxon cities of Zwickau and Chemnitz. About a quarter of the prisoners were Jews.


In Leitmeritz, a sub-camp of the Bavarian concentration camp Flossenbiirg in the Upper Palatinate district of Neustadt an der Waldnaab, thousands of concentration camp prisoners were used in the construction of an underground factory. According to the study, "it was the moral responsibility" of the Auto-Union-management "in Leitmeritz, where 18,000 concentration camp prisoners were used, of which 4500 died."


A spokesman for the Ingolstadt-based automaker said that Audi had with the Auto Union a particularly complicated story. Auto Union had its headquarters in Saxony. The company had been dismantled after the Second World War in the Soviet zone and its documents were sent to the archives of East Germany where the West did not have access until 1990.


Measured by the number of total 50,000 Group employees, the share of forced laborers and concentration camp prisoners in Auto Union had been relatively high, it was said in the report.


The Berlin historian Wolfgang Benz, an expert on the Nazi era and the history of the concentration camp, welcomed the new work, even if it come late. "Better late than never," he said. Sometimes, it needs just a generation gap for the courage to deal with such things.


The study is titled "war economy and labor use in the Auto Union AG of Chemnitz in World War II". It was written by the historian Martin Kukowski and Chemnitz history professor Rudolf Boch.


Jews not surprised by Belgium shooting attack

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Two women and a man were shot and killed Saturday afternoon in an attack against the Jewish Museum of Belgium, in the center of Brussels, sparking a huge wave of reactions in the Jewish community and throughout the kingdom which is on the verge of important legislative elections.


King Philip "has learned with dismay the shooting that took place at the Jewish Museum of Belgium. He extends his condolences to the families of victims. The king is outraged by this act of violence that affects the Jewish community, "announced the Saturday evening the Royal Palace.


A "suspect" who admitted to being present at the scene at the time, was "intercepted" in late afternoon, said Brussels prosecutors, stating that a judge was hearing the case for "murder".


Investigators are looking for someone else the cameras have caught leaving the museum on foot after the shooting.


"Everything is implemented" to "identify and arrest the perpetrator or perpetrators of this tragedy," assured the Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo.


The attack occurred shortly before 4:00 p.m. (1400 GMT) in the chic Sablon, a very frequented site by tourists mainly because of the presence of numerous antique shops.


"Our country and all Belgians, regardless of their language, their origin or their beliefs, are united together to face this despicable attack on a Jewish cultural center," said in a press conference the Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo .


Security measures have been brought to their maximum level around Jewish sites, conveyed the Interior Minister Joëlle Milquet.


The French President, Francois Hollande, has expressed "deep emotion" and "condemned with the utmost force," a "terrible massacre," expressing "full solidarity of France to the Belgian people."


The president of the World Jewish Congress, Ronald S. Lauder, denounced a "hate and terrorist act." "Two years after the brutal murders in Toulouse (France), it is again an example of what hatred and anti-Semitism lead," said the European Jewish Congress.


The European Council of Ulema Moroccans, headquartered in Brussels, also wxpressed its "outrage" at a "despicable act" and expressed its "solidarity and support for the Jewish community in Brussels."


"It's a shock," told AFP, in tears, Paul Opoczynski, a member of the Jewish community in Brussels.


"It inspires great sorrow. We are a quiet small community. This is a cowardly attack, a terrorist act. It had to happen, "said the old man.


The collections of the Jewish Museum of Belgium reflect the life and history of the Jewish populations of the Netherlands and Belgium since the eighteenth century.

Campaign against "Islamic hatred" of the Jews

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The "American Freedom Defense Initiative" (AFDI) organization launched Tuesday, May 20, 2014, a campaign in Washington denouncing the hatred by Muslims against Jews.


The banner on the city bus read: Islamic hatred of the Jews is in the Koran. " "Two-thirds of all U.S. aid goes to Islamic countries. Stop racism. Stop aid to Islamic countries."


The text is accompanied by a picture of Adolf Hitler talking to his "faithful ally" Haj Amin Al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem during the Second World War. The Muslim leader in Palestine had requested the support of the Nazi leader to gain independence and avoid the creation of a Jewish homeland.


Maccabi win leads to anti-Semitic messages in Twitter

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On Sunday night, after the victory of Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Euroleague basketball cup, frustration over the defeat of Real Madrid led hundreds of people to write racist and anti-Semitic messages on social networks. Under the hashtag "putosjudíos" which can be translates to “fucking Jews”, a wave of hatred swept Twitter.


"Freedom of expression is a fundamental right, but there is a line that can not be crossed over, as the glorification of Nazism; that can not be tolerated," said Thomas Morgenstern, director of Atid , one of 11 Jewish communities and institutions that support Israel that have signed the petition.


“Fucking Jews. This would not happen with Hitler," wrote in Spanish at 22.38 pm on Sunday Sara, a young woman that her Twitter profile shows a football shirt of Real Madrid. Daniel, 20, a resident of Alcala de Henares, also alluded to the Third Reich and the extermination camps with regard to the outcome of the Euroleague final, "Maccabi will have a shower after the game ... But at the gas chamber, I hope." 41 other users of the social network considered this interesting and retweetwd his comments.


Now I understand Hitler and his hatred of the Jews," tweeted William. These are part of list of tweets that according to the Jewish community, may constitute an offense of incitement to discrimination, hatred and violence.


"We have focused on the five people who have been identified and created more social alarm with their messages. Most tweets are anonymous and thus to chase after is harder, because the company (Twitter) does not provide the IP address of the user, "said Ruben Novoa, who tracked social networks and has made the complaint. Novoa, representative of Israel in Catalonia, says that some users have rectified their invectives against the threat of being reported. Others, however, have remained firm. Remember also that, according to a recent report by the Anti-Defamation League," Spain is the third most anti-Semitic country in Europe."

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