UK news

Oxford students reject anti-boycott measure

By Josh Jackman, March 5, 2015

Oxford students have voted down a motion which would have ordered its National Union of Students delegates to reject a tie-up between NUS and the Israel boycott movement.

The motion, put forward by RSY Netzer member Ben Goldstein, alleged that the Boycotts, Divestments and Sanctions (BDS) movement “indiscriminately targets all Israelis”. It fell by 72 votes to 30, with 28 abstentions.

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Stalker victims’s bill starts passage through Commons

By Rosa Doherty, March 5, 2015

A bill giving victims of crime enforceable rights was introduced in the House of Commons by Elfyn Llwyd MP with all Party Support.

The bill was drafted by stalking victim and founder of Voice4Victims Claire Waxman and Harry Fletcher criminal justice director at the Digital-Trust.

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Students meet SOAS head over campus intimidation

By Naomi Firsht, March 5, 2015

The director of SOAS (the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London) has held an emergency meeting with Jewish students who say they are too scared to go to lectures following a campus vote to boycott Israel.

On Wednesday, Jewish students complained to Paul Webley about the intimidation they had experienced as they campaigned against the vote.

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MP wants fund to pay for Scottish shul security

By Josh Jackman, March 5, 2015

A Scottish MP has called on First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to re-establish a fund to protect synagogues across the country.

Ken Macintosh, Scottish Labour's shadow social justice spokesperson, commended the JC on its Save Our Shuls campaign, which he said prompted him to write to Mrs Sturgeon.

The £1m fund to protect religious minorities, which was implemented in 2002 after the 9/11 attacks

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Board figures fall out over Bibi's trip to Washington

By Sandy Rashty, March 5, 2015

Two British communal leaders clashed over the Israeli prime minister's controversial speech to the United States Congress this week.

In an exchange of emails, seen by the JC, Board of Deputies vice-president Jonathan Arkush and Laurence Brass, its treasurer, disagreed over Benjamin Netanyahu's appearance in Washington on Tuesday.

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Ukip 'idiots' over shechita

By Sandy Rashty, March 5, 2015

A Jewish Ukip candidate branded his party's National Executive Committee "idiots" after the policy on kosher slaughter was reversed for the fourth time.

Jeremy Zeid, Ukip's parliamentary candidate for Hendon, attacked the NEC after it voted 6:5 for a ban on the non-stun slaughter of animals on Monday.

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Crumbs! It's art on matzah

March 5, 2015

A designer has come up with a cracking way of celebrating Pesach.

Using a computer-controlled laser cutter, Ben Farleigh has engraved Jewish-themed images on pieces of matzah. Two of the designs - called Jerusalem and Slaves - have been specially made for the festival.

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Scared away as hate grows at SOAS

By Naomi Firsht, March 5, 2015

The text message arrived at 7:30am, just a few hours before my appointment with the Jewish students.

Could we meet away from the university, they asked, as they felt "uncomfortable" about being on campus.

This is the reality for a number of Jewish students at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in central London.

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Activists backing for BDS in student union poll

By Naomi Firsht, March 5, 2015

Staff and students at SOAS voted to implement a full academic boycott of Israel in what was described as a "referendum".

Backed by the union's boycott, divestment and sanctions movement, last week's poll saw 1,283 students vote to break SOAS's ties with the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. That represented 75 per cent of the people who voted. There were 425 votes against a boycott.

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Tweeters offered legal help as Galloway sues

By Marcus Dysch, March 5, 2015

Anti-Israel politician George Galloway is taking legal action against Twitter users who he claims have libelled him, it has emerged.

He is demanding thousands of pounds from people who posted tweets alleging that he was antisemitic.

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