UK government

Britain's policy on Israel a total mess

By Robin Shepherd, March 31, 2011

The bizarre, contradictory mess that is British foreign policy towards Israel was on display yet again last week with that great stage of fools, the United Nations Human Rights Council, providing the setting.

It rarely makes a difference what's on the charge sheet these days. If it's about slamming Israel, Britain's usually either turning a blind eye or heartily voting in favour.


End of Arts Council funding for London Review of Books

By Jennifer Lipman, March 30, 2011

A literary magazine described by historian Benny Morris as sometimes being "no more than pro-Arab propaganda" will no longer receive any government funding.

The London Review of Books (LRB), published once a fortnight, had received £767,000 of public money to pay contributors since it was founded 31 years ago. However it did not apply for Arts Council support this year.


Could extremists benefit from AV?

By Martin Bright, March 24, 2011

Campaigners against the reform of voting system have warned the Jewish community that a switch to the "alternative vote" system will encourage extremist groups and force mainstream parties to pander to the anti-immigrant vote.


Does the proposed Alternative Vote matter to Jews? The two camps put their case

March 24, 2011

Yes: Fabian Hamilton, MP

We know that British Jews have always been at the forefront of the battle against extremist parties such as the BNP. This is precisely why we should be voting Yes in May's referendum on the Alternative Vote.


UK minister: Hamas Purim attacks 'unacceptable'

By Jennifer Lipman, March 21, 2011

Britain’s Foreign Office minister for the Middle East has condemned Hamas for sending more than 50 mortars into Israel in just a few hours, and called on the terrorist organisation to immediately halt its behaviour.

Alistair Burt said that the barrage from the Gaza Strip – the heaviest in two years – by a group allied to Hamas was “unacceptable”.


Former MP denied expenses appeal

By Jessica Elgot, March 18, 2011

The former Labour MP for Leyton and Wanstead, Harry Cohen, has lost his appeal to keep the £65,000 “golden goodbye” he received when he left Parliament.


Four to join new human rights commission

By Jessica Elgot, March 18, 2011

Four leading Jewish human rights experts have been appointed by Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg to investigate a potential UK Bill of Rights.

Nearly half of all the members of the newly formed independent commission are Jewish.


Rifkind praises UN Libyan vote

By Jessica Elgot, March 18, 2011

Libya has declared a ceasefire to comply with a United Nations resolution passed last night.

The announcement of a ceasefire by foreign minister Moussa Koussa came as Prime Minister David Cameron said RAF warplanes would be in places in the "coming hours".


Baroness: let schools deal with hate speech

By Robyn Rosen, March 11, 2011

Communities minister Baroness Hanham has said the government expects schools and universities to tackle hate speech themselves — and that she believed that an adequate framework was already in place.

She answered questions on antisemitism on campus, online and at school during a session in the House of Lords yesterday.


Glenda Jackson: calling Israelis Nazis is not hate speech - it's free speech

By Jessica Elgot, February 25, 2011

You can call Israelis Nazis and compare Gaza to a concentration camp - but that is not preaching hatred, according to Labour MP Glenda Jackson.

Ms Jackson, who won her Hampstead and Kilburn seat with a majority of just 42 votes in the general election, submitted herself to a grilling by Jewish constituents at London's Belsize Square Synagogue this week.