Israel Deputy Prime Minister seeks UK support

Israel’s Deputy Prime Minister Silvan Shalom has urged British donors to continue their support for the Jewish state as it attempts to pursue peace and faces a threat from Iran.

Addressing British Ort’s gala dinner in London on Monday, Mr Shalom said the Israeli government was working hard to “give people a normal life”. However, Iran was “trying to do everything it can” to become a nuclear power and the region’s dominant force.

“Iran is also doing everything to sabotage any peace process we would like to have with the Palestinians,” added the politician, who met Foreign Secretary David Miliband and Middle East envoy Tony Blair during his time in Britain.

The dinner, at the Marriott Hotel in Grosvenor Square, brought in £365,000 in support of Ort’s project to build a rocket-proof science and technology centre at Shaar HaNegev High School on the outskirts of Sderot. The campus has been the target of rockets fired from Gaza and the educational charity hopes to raise around £2 million to fund the building work.

Outgoing ITV supremo Michael Grade regaled diners with anecdotes from his TV and showbusiness career, going on to pay tribute to Ort’s work in the Negev.

    Last updated: 4:22pm, November 26 2009