UK news

Kosher Meat: In Depth

By Leon Symons, May 27, 2010

THE CONSUMER
Many kosher meat-eaters are not only aware of wider trends towards organic produce, but feel excluded from the improvement in quality and choice that they perceive in non-kosher meat.

Gaby Brown, a mother-of-three from Stamford Hill, said: "Keeping kosher is fine but I find that I don't have as much choice about sourcing origins and we don't get meat or poultry from special or historic breeds, which can be particularly good. It feels to me like we're looking on from the sidelines; the non-kosher trade has all this variety while we can only sit and gaze from afar.

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Schools ready for academy revolution

By Simon Rocker, May 27, 2010

Some of the top Jewish schools will be among the first in the country able to take advantage of the government's flagship programme of educational reform.

New Education Secretary Michael Gove wrote to all schools on Wednesday to invite them to opt out of local authority control and enjoy greater independence by accepting academy status. But schools rated outstanding in Ofsted inspections will be able to go to the head of queue and become academies as early as this September.

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Birmingham rabbi dies

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 27, 2010

Rabbi Jerachmiel Cofnas, who served the Birmingham community for 50 years, has died aged 98.

More than 600 people attended his funeral at Philips Park Cemetery in Manchester on Friday.

He died at the Beenstock Home in Salford last Wednesday, the first day of Shavuot.

Rabbi Cofnas was minister for Birmingham's former New Synagogue, but was also a shochet and respected as an expert mohel.

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Peres denies South Africa nuclear offer

May 27, 2010

The author of a new book on the relationship between Israel and South Africa has accused Israeli President Shimon Peres of evading the question of whether he offered to sell nuclear weapons to the apartheid regime in the 1970s.

"If Peres denies he made such an offer, perhaps he would like to explain exactly what he did discuss at these meetings," said American academic Sasha Polakow-Suransky, author of The Unspoken Alliance: Israel's secret alliance with apartheid South Africa, published this week in the US.

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HMD grants escape coalition cuts

By Simon Rocker, May 27, 2010

Two grants made by the previous Labour government to mark Holocaust Memorial Day will escape a review of Whitehall spending ordered by the new Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition.

In January, allocations of £100,000 each to the Wiener Library and the Jewish Museum in London were announced by the then Culture Minister, Margaret Hodge.

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Salmond: Scots Jews are not persecuted

By Leon Symons, May 27, 2010

Scotland's First Minister has dismissed the claim that the country's Jewish community is shrinking because of a rise in antisemitism.

But speaking this week to a meeting arranged by Glasgow Jewish Educational Forum, Alex Salmond did acknowledge that there were incidents.

He went on: "I don't share the analysis that the Jewish community is suffering a wave of persecution or that antisemitism in Scotland is rapidly growing and such a severe problem that it is jeopardising this community."

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Manchester Police Chief: We'll fight hate

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 27, 2010

The Manchester community must do more to meet the threat of antisemitism in a city where they are more likely to face abuse than anywhere else in the country, according to its police chief.

In an exclusive interview, Chief Constable Peter Fahy said individuals must be more proactive in reporting incidents, and pledged to increase police numbers on campus significantly to thwart attacks such as the one suffered by Israel's deputy ambassador at Manchester University last month.

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Girl attacked in night bus horror with race abuser

May 27, 2010

A 21-year-old dental nurse was violently attacked after defending her Jewish friends during an antisemitic tirade.

But one year on, police are no nearer to finding her attacker, and this week they offered an unprecedented £10,000 reward for information which leads to an arrest.

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Applause for Israeli artist

By Julia Weiner, May 27, 2010

Leading Israeli artist Yael Bartana has been awarded the £40,000 Artes Mundi Prize for Contemporary Art, the UK's largest art prize.

Ms Bartana was honoured for her work over the past eight years. Her work has been widely exhibited all over the world, including at Tate Modern earlier this year.

She was unable to accept the prize in person at the National Museum in Cardiff because she was mounting an exhibition in Malmo, Sweden.

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Fraud probe dropped into ex-Leeds United director

By Jessica Elgot, May 27, 2010

Property tycoon and former Leeds United director Simon Morris has vowed action against West Yorkshire Police who, he claims, "devastated" his life during a three-year probe into fraud allegations, which were dropped this week.

Mr Morris's property empire SRM Holdings was investigated for running fraudulent buy-to-let schemes. The investigation has now been dropped by the Serious Fraud Office, due to insufficient evidence.

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