UK news

One year post-Gaza, and there is a surge in pro-Israel grassroots groups

By Josh Jackman, July 9, 2015

Since bursting into prominence last summer in reaction to rising antisemitism and dissatisfaction with the establishment's response to the Gaza conflict, grassroots organisations have flourished.

Friends of Israel groups in Sussex, north London and the north-west have grown in stature, while others have triumphantly emerged in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Cumbria.

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Coroner review welcomed by community

By Naomi Firsht, July 9, 2015

Community leaders have welcomed the government's decision to review coroner services following complaints from Jews and Muslims over delays in releasing bodies.

Senior representatives of the Jewish and Muslim communities met Justice Secretary Michael Gove last month to discuss concerns over the service in London.

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'Selfless heroes' honoured by Wizo

By Sandy Rashty, July 9, 2015

BBC journalist John Ware has claimed the corporation often scrutinises Israel far more closely than the Palestinians in its coverage of the Middle East conflict.

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Online travel agent adds Israel to its list of destinations

By Sandy Rashty, July 9, 2015

An online travel agent says it will add Israel to its list of destinations after a complaint from a customer who was told he couldn't book a holiday there.

Surrey-based Travel Republic, which has two million clients a year, offers flights and hotels in beach resorts across the world, including Egypt, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.

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Charedim plan exodus from London shtetl

By Simon Rocker, July 9, 2015

Charedi activists are exploring the possibility of setting up a new community outside London because of the shortage of housing among a rapidly expanding population.

Rabbi Asher Gratt, who lives in Stamford Hill, north London, said that "many families in our community are struggling very hard to find suitable living space".

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Hundreds flex their brains in annual quiz

By Charlotte Oliver, July 9, 2015

Are you smarter than a 10-year-old?

The chances are slim, if last week's Etgar Challenge is any indication.

On Thursday, more than 600 children from 20 Jewish primary schools across the country proved their brainpower by taking part in an inter-school quiz that tested the limits of their Jewish knowledge.

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Jews across community sign up to Muslim-led fightback against radicalisation

By Josh Jackman, July 9, 2015

A cross-denominational campaign started by Muslim groups to tackle extremism has received support from rabbis across the community.

The Fightback Starts Here coalition, which launched on Thursday with an open letter signed by more than 100 charities, activists and leaders from across the UK, aims to protect British children from radicalisation.

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Inadequate Chasidic school rapped for failing to improve

By Simon Rocker, July 9, 2015

A Chasidic school that has previously been ordered to improve its secular studies has insisted that children do not need to be taught English until their fourth year of primary school, according to inspectors.

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Students strengthen Israeli connection

By Charlotte Oliver, July 9, 2015

Last Monday, more than 350 sixth form pupils from across the UK gathered at JFS to take part in the annual Israel: Get Connected conference, organised by the Israeli embassy, the Jewish Agency and UJIA.

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Scottish Christians and Jews unite to combat antisemitism

By Josh Jackman, July 9, 2015

Groups forged to combat antisemitism and anti-Israel sentiment have been launched all over Britain since last summer.

One of the grassroots organisations that began during the Gaza conflict, the Scottish Israel Forum, fell by the wayside in January, but as its former chairman Richard Coats said, "the energy that went into it has diffused into different groups".

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