By Yigal Hai, Haaretz Correspondent

The year 2006 saw a sharp rise in incidents of anti-Semitism worldwide, and the highest total number of incidents since 2000, according to a study released Sunday by the Stephen Roth Institute for the Study of Anti-Semitism and Racism in conjunction with the World Jewish Congress to correspond with Holocaust Memorial Day.

A total of 590 incidents of violence or vandalism were reported in 2006 against Jews, Jewish property and Jewish institutions.

The number of physical assaults on Jews was twice as high as it was 2005, the report stated.