UK news

Miliband dismissed Barak ‘war crimes’ prosecution bid

By Leon Symons and Anshel Pfeffer, October 1, 2009

Foreign Secretary David Miliband has delivered a withering riposte to an attempt by Palestinian supporters to have Ehud Barak arrested in Britain as a war criminal.

Addressing the Labour Friends of Israel fringe meeting, Mr Miliband warned: “This will never become a country where ministers of Israel are unable to come and have proper dialogue with the government of the United Kingdom.”

Earlier in the day, lawyers acting for 16 Palestinian families applied unsuccessfully to Westminster Magistrates’ Court for the warrant.

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Barak offers Brown his backing

By Leon Symons, Brighton, October 1, 2009

Israel’s Defence Minister Ehud Barak offered his support to embattled Prime Minister Gordon Brown at a packed Labour Friends of Israel meeting at the Labour Party conference in Brighton on Tuesday night.

Mr Barak, who leads Israel’s Labour Party, praised the economic nous of Mr Brown, who was among the 500-plus MPs and conference delegates at the meeting.

He echoed the Prime Minister’s keynote speech earlier in the day by urging Labour supporters to “never give in and keep fighting to victory” in the next election.

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Chris Grayling: No more funding for extremists

By Martin Bright, October 1, 2009

Chris Grayling is a cool customer.

He has a reputation as a Tory attack dog, a ruthless opposition politician who can put the squeeze on any government minister unfortunate enough to cross his path.

He has already seen off one Home Secretary during his short time in the shadow post and is building a reputation as a worthy adversary to the current incumbent, Alan Johnson.

He has the demeanour of an establishment man — crisp pink shirt, Tory blue tie, House of Commons cufflinks — and speaks with the authority of someone heading for the Cabinet.

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Raptorex Kriegsteini: the first Jewish dinosaur

By Simon Rocker, October 1, 2009

Many may be happy to be memorialised on a park bench plaque or a piece of synagogue curtain but Cecile and Roman Kriegstein of Palm Beach, Florida enjoy a more exotic tribute.

Their name has been given to a newly discovered species of dinosaur.

The University of Chicago bestowed the honour after being presented with the fossil by their son Henry, an eye surgeon and keen natural historian, who bought the remains from a dealer. His parents, both in their 80s and supporters of Yad Vashem, came from Poland and met in Germany after the war.

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Tories will review Prevent policy on extremism

By Martin Bright, October 1, 2009

A conservative government would stop all funding to groups that promote radical Islamic ideology and target money at organisations with a record of bringing Britain’s diverse communities together.

In an interview with the JC, Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling said Labour's policy risked creating ghettoes.

He revealed that the Tories were planning an immediate review of the Prevent anti-extremism strategy, which he accused of channelling money to radical organisations.

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Miliband denounces Barak arrest threat

By Leon Symons, September 30, 2009

Foreign secretary David Miliband made it clear that the government will not back attempts by Palestinian supporters to try to have Israeli politicians arrested as war criminals.

Speaking at the Labour Friends of Israel fringe meeting at the Labour Party conference in Brighton, Mr Miliband said: “This will never become a country where ministers of Israel are unable to come and have proper dialogue with the government of the United Kingdom.”

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Barak arrest warrant is rejected by judge

By Jessica Elgot, September 30, 2009

A judge has rejected a Palestinian group’s application to issue an arrest warrant for Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak, who is in the UK this week.

Deputy District Judge Daphne Wickham at Westminster Magistrates Court said: “I am satisfied that under customary international law, Mr Barak has immunity from prosecution as he would not be able to perform his functions efficiently if he were the subject of criminal proceedings in this jurisdiction.”

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Barak urged to leave the UK after arrest fears

By Jessica Elgot, September 29, 2009

Israel’s Defence Minister Ehud Barak has been urged to flee the UK after two Palestinian groups applied for a warrant for his arrest.

Two unnamed groups, which represent a total of 16 people, have sought to obtain an international arrest warrant for alleged war crimes committed by Mr Barak.

Solicitors for one of the groups, Irvine Thanvi Nataz, submitted the request for the warrant to Westminster Magistrates today.

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Barak to meet Brown, Miliband for Iran talks

By Jessica Elgot, September 29, 2009

Israel’s Defence Minister Ehud Barak will meet Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Foreign Secretary David Miliband at the Labour Party conference in Brighton to discuss the growing nuclear threat from Iran.

But Mr Barak's visit may be hampered by a Palestinian group who have sought to obtain an international arrest warrant for alleged war crimes committed by Mr Barak.

The group, represented by solicitors Irvine Thanvi Nataz, submitted the request to Westminster Magistrates, seeking the arrest under the International Criminal Court Act 2001 and the Criminal Justice Act.

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BNP councillor suspended for false murder claims

By Jessica Elgot, September 25, 2009

BNP man Richard Barnbrook has been suspended as a councillor for misleading constituents over the murder figures in his borough.

He falsely claimed in a video posted on YouTube that three people were murdered in three weeks in Barking and Dagenham, and allowed the clip to remain online for four months despite being warned it was inaccurate.

Mr Barnbrook claimed he had been confused about the figures because of his dyslexia.

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