Washington, Sep 5 (IANS) A recent Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) report has revealed that hate crimes in the US have increased to the highest level in 12 years, triggered largely by a surge in assaults on Black and Asian Americans.
The report said there were 7,759 identified hate crimes in 2020, which was a 6 per cent increase on 2019 and the highest number since 2008, reports Xinhua news agency.
The data, submitted to the FBI by more than 15,000 state and local police agencies, showed that in 2020 anti-Black assaults increased from 1,930 to 2,755, a 40 per cent increase on 2019, while anti-Asian assaults rose from 158 to 274, up 70 per cent.
Of 6,576 offenders recorded, 55 per cent were white, 20 percent Black, 16 per cent unknown, 6 per cent of multiple races and 1 per cent Asian, said the report.
Meanwhile, anti-Muslim and anti-Jewish hate crimes decreased by 42 per cent and 30 per cent, respectively.
US Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement on Saturday that the FBI Hate Crime Statistics report for 2020 “demonstrates the urgent need for a comprehensive response”.
Garland said most hate crimes were motivated by race, ethnicity, ancestry or gender identity.
Many activists and lawmakers believe the actual number of hate crimes is larger than reported, arguing that local police are poorly trained in identifying and classifying such crimes and lack resources and interest.