UK news

Cameron's Cabinet: Who are they?

By Jessica Elgot, May 12, 2010

Our run-down on how the new cabinet feel on key Jewish issues, including Israel, universal jurisdiction, faith schools and Islamic extremism.

David Cameron
Prime Minister, Conservatives

David Cameron talked warmly of finding his Jewish roots and said he had spoken about them to one of Britain’s leading rabbinical authorities.

Last July, Yaakov Wise of Manchester University’s Centre for Jewish Studies traced Mr Cameron’s family tree to 16th-century Jewish scholar Elijah Levit.

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NHS staff rate Hitler's 'coolness'

By Jessica Elgot, May 11, 2010

NHS staff have been asked to rate how “cool” Adolf Hitler was and to compare him to their chief executive, in a "disturbing" survey about leadership.

The survey, entitled ‘Making Leadership Cool’ is part of a £10,000 project of NHS West Midlands Strategic Health Authority.

It was sent to 3,300 staff at the West Midlands Ambulance service, who were asked to compare Hitler’s “coolness” with Richard Branson, Gordon Brown, Fabio Capello and Winston Churchill.

They were then asked to compare Hitler with their own chief executive Ian Cumming.

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Galloway seeks new role as 'Michael Moore' of Palestine

By Jessica Elgot, May 10, 2010

Former Respect MP George Galloway, who failed to win a seat in Thursday’s election, is heading to Hollywood, intending to become the “Michael Moore” of anti-Israel filmmaking.

Mr Galloway told the Times he would fly to Los Angeles later this weekend to drum up funding of between £2m and £4m for a film about the Palestinians.

Mr Galloway said he was disappointed that Respect would have no role to play in a hung parliament, after he failed to win a seat in Poplar and Limehouse.

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Election result: Watford

By Robyn Rosen, May 10, 2010

Richard Harrington, the former chairman of Conservative Friends of Israel, has ended Labour’s 13-year reign in Watford.

Mr Harrington received 19,291 votes, a 34.9 per cent share, narrowly beating Liberal Democrat candidate, Sal Brinton who received 17,866 votes.

The seat was held by Labour’s justice minister Claire Ward since 1997, who this time received 14,750 votes.

Mr Harrington said: “I was very pleased to win because it was a lot of hard work.

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Dismore may challenge Hendon election

By Marcus Dysch, May 10, 2010

Former Labour MP Andrew Dismore may legally challenge the result of the poll in the Hendon constituency, which has one of the highest percentages of Jewish voters in the country.

Mr Dismore wrote to supporters asking them to provide him with evidence of disorganisation and proof they had been denied the chance to vote.

He lost the seat, which he had held for 13 years, to Matthew Offord, a former deputy leader of Barnet Council, by just 106 votes following a recount.

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Election result: Harlow

By Dina Rickman, May 10, 2010

The political consultant of the Conservative Friends of Israel, Robert Halfon, has become an MP in Harlow after a 10 year campaign to enter Parliament.

Mr Halfon benefited from a 5.9 per cent swing from Labour to the Conservatives, beating his Labour opponent, former Armed Services Minister Bill Rammell, by 4,925 votes.

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MPAC boasts of election 'triumph'

By Marcus Dysch, May 7, 2010

A Muslim organisation which campaigned against candidates who support Israel has claimed it is responsible for Andrew Dismore losing his Hendon seat.

Mr Dismore was narrowly defeated by Conservative candidate Matthew Offord, losing the constituency by just 106 votes following a recount.

On its website, the Muslim Public Affairs Committee (MPAC) claimed it had “defeated the top ranking Zionist MP Dismore!”.

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BNP face big election losses

By Dina Rickman, May 7, 2010

The BNP have suffered a thrashing at the hands of the electorate, despite fears that the extreme rightwing party would gain a seat in Parliament after their success in the European elections.

Nick Griffin, the leader of the BNP, last night said it was "not too late” for his party in Britain, which only recently publicly acknowledged that the Shoah happened.

However the results flooding in from seats and local councils across the UK did not support his statement, with the party returning no MPs and almost half of their candidates said to be facing losing their deposit.

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Letwin survives and Fabricant celebrates

By Jessica Elgot, May 7, 2010

Many Jewish candidates have been celebrating retaining their seats in a tumultuous election night.

Chairman of the Conservative Research Department and former Shadow Chancellor Oliver Letwin has won his seat in Dorset West. He has a majority of 3,923, higher than in 2005.

Speaker John Bercow has held his seat in Buckingham, beating off a challenge by UKIP's Nigel Farage, who was injured in a plane crash earlier in the day. He was not challenged by Labour or the Liberal Democrats.

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Elections result: Cheadle

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 7, 2010

The already thin margin of support for Liberal Democrat's Mark Hunter didn't slip at all in Cheadle despite bad press over anti-Israel letters he sent to Muslim voters.

He remains in position as MP in the south Manchester area with a majority of 3,000, beating off Tory Ben Jeffreys who was hoping to add to the two Conservative seats now in Greater Manchester.

One Conservative activist close to Mr Jeffreys simply said it had been a "disappointing night".

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