UK news

MPs' challenge on Israel's child prisoners

By Leon Symons, December 9, 2010

Israel has admitted that some Palestinian children as young as 12 or 13 charged with criminal offences have been brought into court in handcuffs and leg irons.

The practice was brought to light by four MPs of the All Party Palestinian Group who visited Israel and the West Bank at the end of last month with lawyers from Israeli non-governmental organisation Defence of Children International.


PSC play at Polish Centre sparks angry demo

By Jessica Elgot, December 9, 2010

Community leaders have accused the Palestine Solidarity Campaign of sabotaging Polish-Jewish relations by staging Seven Jewish Children at the Polish Centre in Hammersmith.

The Caryl Churchill play, originally staged at the Royal Court immediately after the Gaza offensive in 2009, was denounced by many critics as antisemitic.


Police probe into 'antisemitic' speech at LSE

December 9, 2010

Police are investigating allegations of antisemitism after a lecture by a controversial speaker at the London School of Economics descended into chaos and 30 Jewish students walked out in protest.

The subject addressed by Abdel Bari Atwan, editor-in-chief of London-based Al-Quds Al-Arabi newspaper, was "How much influence does the Zionist lobby exert in the US and UK?"


Hague anger at no Israel settlement freeze

By Robyn Rosen, December 9, 2010

The Foreign Secretary William Hague has said he is “disappointed” Israel has not renewed its freeze on settlement building.

The announcement comes after the United States abandoned its efforts to persuade the Israeli government to freeze construction in the West Bank for a further 90 days.

Mr Hague said: “I am disappointed that Israel has not renewed the freeze on settlement construction and that peace talks are currently on hold.

“It is Britain’s longstanding view that settlements are illegal under international law and an obstacle to peace.


Breadsticks at dawn with bakery rivals lawsuit

By Jennifer Lipman, December 8, 2010

The Jewish owners of two London bakeries are engaged in a legal row over alleged unpaid loans and an aborted plan to work together.

After developing cosmetics company Space NK and the vegetarian food chains Eat and Two Veg, entrepreneur David Krantz set up the Artisan Bakery in Park Royal.

His success in the industry was matched by restaurateur Doron Zilkha who owns the Brompton Quarter Brasserie in Knightsbridge and more recently founded the Bread Boutique off the King's Road.


Joint statement from Kris Hopkins MP and Lord Janner

December 8, 2010

History has taught us that there is a clear need to address religious hatred in any way it manifests itself.

The APPG on Islamophobia is about facing up to hatred against the Muslim community, and its establishment is clearly appropriate at this time.

In common with many APPGs, the idea of having an external organisation provide administrative support was deemed a sensible and practical way forward.


Conservative cabinet aide Lee Scott pledges to abstain in tuition fees vote

By Jennifer Lipman, December 8, 2010

Jewish MP Lee Scott has joined the list of possible government rebels in tomorrows vote on plans to raise university fees.

The Conservative MP for Ilford North has said he will abstain at the vote, despite being a senior cabinet aide in the coalition government.

In an email to the JC, he said: "I am not voting for a fees increase.”

He added: “I am working on proposals to help students and will have further details in the new year.”

Before the general election Mr Scott was one of four incumbent Conservatives to sign a pledge to block higher fees.


MPs secure parliamentary debate on antisemitism

By Jennifer Lipman, December 7, 2010

MPs will have the chance to quiz ministers on the coalition government’s policies to tackle antisemitism next January, thanks to the efforts of two backbench MPs from opposing parties.

The debate, to take place in parliament on January 20, is the first one focused on antisemitism to be set up by backbench MPs.

John Mann and Mike Freer, respectively the chair and vice-president of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) Against Antisemitism, instigated the debate to give MPs the opportunity to discuss ways to tackle antisemitism.


European victory in save shechitah campaign

By Robyn Rosen, December 7, 2010

The campaign to save the slaughter of kosher meat in the UK has passed another hurdle after European ministers today passed draft legislation which will not introduce controversial labelling.

This morning, the European Council of Ministers approved a draft of new food information regulation. The draft did not include amendment 205, which called for all meat products derived from animals slaughtered by shechitah to be labelled "meat from slaughter without stunning".


Stacey Solomon wins I'm a Celebrity – Get Me Out Of Here!

By Jennifer Lipman, December 5, 2010

Stacey Solomon has been crowned Queen of the jungle after winning this year's I'm a Celebrity – Get Me Out Of Here!

The former King Solomon pupil from Dagenham won the contest after audiences watched her brave tasks including eating kangaroo penis.

Ms Solomon, 21, beat former MP Lembit Opik and onetime Bond girl actress Britt Eckland to take the title on the ITV show.

After her win the star said: "Never in a million years did I think anything like this could happen. I'm a wreck."

Her win comes just a year after she gained third place on the X Factor.