Zionist Federation

Envoy is told off over invite for settlers

By Marcus Dysch, August 7, 2008

The Foreign Office has said it was a mistake to invite three West Bank settlers to an official birthday reception in honour of the Queen - and has implied that behind the scenes, the British ambassador to Israel has been rapped over the knuckles for inviting the men.

Three members of the Yesha Council of settlers attended the party at Ambassador Tom Phillips' Ramat Gan residence in June.

But the Foreign Office, reaffirming its stance that the settlements are illegal, says it will ensure settlers are not invited to such receptions again.


Edgware Synagogue hears of hospital's terror plight

June 5, 2008

In a joint Jerusalem Day venture, Edgware Masorti Synagogue and the Zionist Federation presented “Ashkelon under fire”. The speaker was Lea Malul of Ashkelon’s Barzilai Medical Centre, who explained how the hospital coped with the constant threat of terror. Barzilai is fundraising for a protected underground facility for patients as its buildings are not fortified against rocket attacks.


Israel 60 Gala rocked by protesters

By Alex Kasriel, May 16, 2008

Solidarity hardened among the 7,500-strong crowd at the Israel 60 Gala in Wembley Arena last week after a surreal incident occurred moments before the show began.

While they waited for the entertainment to start, a massive cheer rang out as around 30 police swarmed into the audience and wrestled a group of anti-Israel protesters to the ground.

Four men and one woman were led from the building where they were arrested for public order offences and released on bail.


The Zionist leader heading for Zion

By Leon Symons, May 8, 2008

At an age when many would consider retirement, 65-year-old Andrew Balcombe is to join the ranks of the long-distance commuters.

The chairman of the Zionist Federation is making aliyah this week — but is continuing in his communal role. He will have completed his first two-year stint but plans to stand again when the post comes up for election in September.

“I will be travelling back and forth between Israel and Britain, but it won’t be as often as some people who do it weekly,” said Mr Balcombe. “In fact, I and my wife Jean feel privileged to be going to Israel at this time.


ZF under fire for ‘plugging’ Boris event

By Simon Rocker, April 18, 2008

The hotly contested election for mayor of London this week sparked accusations of inappropriate attempts to canvass Jewish votes.

The Jewish Labour Movement has complained to the Zionist Federation for sending out an email circular which publicised Conservative challenger Boris Johnson’s visit to North-West London last Sunday.

In another incident on the same day, Nicky Gavron, the Labour deputy mayor, drew protests for plugging Ken Livingstone’s bid for re-election at a Holocaust play in the West End.