Gaza

BBC monitor: Bowen is 'biased'

By Leon Symons, December 23, 2009

A press monitoring group has claimed in a new report that much of BBC Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen’s reporting during Operation Cast Lead in Gaza was biased against Israel.

BBC Watch, which produced the report, has made an official complaint to the BBC on the back of its findings.

Run by Jerusalem-based lawyer Trevor Asserson, BBC Watch monitored the corporation’s output on the operation from December 28 last year, one day after it started, until January 30, three days after the ceasefire.

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Quiet on the Gaza border is deceptive

By Anshel Pfeffer, December 17, 2009

Almost a year after Operation Cast Lead, Israel may still be fighting a legal and diplomatic battle over the war in the international arena, but around Gaza itself there is uncustomary calm.

On the Israeli side, all the damage caused by missiles and mortar rounds has been repaired, and life is back almost to normal in the villages around the Gaza Strip. While the occasional Kassam is still fired towards Israel, these are always badly aimed. They quite often fall in Palestinian territory and have not caused any Israeli casualties in the last 11 months.

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Government split over Gaza war 'line'

By Martin Bright, December 10, 2009

Two government departments have clashed over official policy on the last Gaza conflict.

The Foreign Office was forced to intervene to stop a Department for Communities and Local Government initiative to reassure the Muslim community that the British government did not support Israel’s actions in Gaza, the JC can reveal.

The DCLG, which is responsible for the government’s Prevent programme to tackle violent extremism, was keen to emphasise that the British government had serious reservations about Israel’s Cast Lead operation.

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LSE union twins with Gaza despite protests

By Robyn Rosen, December 3, 2009

The London School of Economics (LSE) will be twinning its union with the Islamic University of Gaza, despite protest from students.

A motion which called for the twinning was carried after 161 students voted in favour and 131 against in a debate organised by LSE Palestine Society.

Students from the Israel Society protested outside with banners saying “Say yes to hummus, no to Hamas”.

The decision was made after Ben Grabiner, chairman of the LSE Israel Society, demanded a recount of the votes after allegations of fraud.

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LSE and Gaza University vote 'may be fraud'

By Robyn Rosen, November 27, 2009

Votes in a debate which called for the London School of Economics to be twinned with the Islamic University of Gaza are to be recounted after allegations of fraud.

Ben Grabiner, chairman of the LSE Israel Society, demanded a recount after the motion was carried by 155 votes in favour to 135 against. He claimed that some students were caught entering more than one vote at a time.

The motion, put forward by the university’s Palestine Society, was debated yesterday while a “Hummus not Hamas” protest took place outside on behalf of the Israel Society.

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Israel critics pledge their backing for Goldstone

By Leon Symons, November 26, 2009

Anglo-Jewish groups which are strongly critical of Israel are planning a public show of support for the Goldstone Report on Israel’s action in Gaza.

Independent Jewish Voices and Jews for Justice for Palestinians are among a number of organisations who intend to place an open letter addressed to Prime Minister Gordon Brown in The Times.

Noting that “British Jews do not speak with one voice”, they welcome the Goldstone Report and condemn what they call the “vilification” of Judge Richard Goldstone.

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Goldstone: Franco-British initiative

By Martin Bright, Political Editor, November 3, 2009

Britain and France have today delivered a new proposal to the United Nations calling on Israel and the Palestinians to launch an immediate inquiry into allegations of war crimes during the war in Gaza.

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Israel embassy demos: 63 charged

By Leon Symons, October 27, 2009

A total of 63 people will be appearing in court later this week on charges arising out of demonstrations outside the Israeli embassy in west London in January this year.

One person has been charged with actual bodily harm, one with handling stolen goods and almost everyone else with breaking section two of the Public Order Act, which covers violent disorder. The youngest person charged is a 12-year-old boy from Tower Hamlets.

All 63 are due to appear at West London Magistrates’ Court on Thursday and Friday of this week.

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Goldstone: I was not a traitor to Israel

By Simon Rocker and Anshel Pfeffer, October 22, 2009

Judge Richard Goldstone, author of a controversial United Nations report highly critical of Israel’s actions in Gaza, has defended his role in an interview with the JC.

The South African jurist said he was “a traditional Zionist” who found it hard to understand the suggestion that he had betrayed Israel by agreeing to lead the inquiry. “On the contrary, I believed that what I agreed to do would be in the interests of Israel and the region,” he said.

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Israel slips down rankings for media freedom

By Jessica Elgot, October 20, 2009

Israel has lost its place at the top of Middle Eastern states for media freedom after the restrictions placed on journalists during the Gaza war.

Reporters San Frontières, which complies an annual ranking of media freedom in 176 countries, placed Israel in 93rd place, below Kuwait, UAE and Lebanon.

Severe restrictions were placed on journalists covering the Israeli offensive in Gaza. Three journalists were killed in Gaza, 20 injured and five were arrested.

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