UK news

Eruv snow damage repaired for Shabbat

By Jessica Elgot, January 8, 2010

The North West London eruv has been repaired and is in use for Shabbat, the website has reported.

But the eruv wire on Wildwood Road, Barnet has had to be repositioned and as a result the pavement on the southern side next to Sandy Heath is now outside the Eruv.

Rabbis have warned that the eruv could still be damaged if further heavy snow or bad weather damages it further during the course of Shabbat.

Earlier this week the eruv was "breached" due to the inclement weather and emergency repair work had to be done.


Leader: An Open Letter To Jack Straw

January 8, 2010

Dear Jack Straw,

This week, a deeply embarrassed Lady Scotland was obliged to stonewall her Israeli hosts and admit that nothing had yet been done to close the loophole in British law allowing arrest warrants to be issued at the instigation of private individuals.

The question, Mr Straw, is why nothing has yet been done.

You yourself, when Foreign Secretary in 2005, actually apologised to your Israeli counterpart when General Doron Almog stayed on his plane at Heathrow rather than get off and risk prosecution.


Man guilty of kosher bakery break-in

By Jessica Elgot, January 8, 2010

A man has pleaded guilty to stealing a laptop and causing several hundred pounds worth of damage to a kosher bakery in Stamford Hill.

Mehmet Kama, 29, of Bridlington Road, Enfield pleaded guilty at Thames Magistrates Court to burglary, following a break-in at Grodzinski kosher bakery.

DCI Gary Bruce of Hackney Police said: "This individual was quickly identified and apprehended following extensive police enquiries, with help from the Jewish community.


George Galloway deported from Egypt

By Jessica Elgot, January 8, 2010

MP George Galloway has been deported from Egypt after attempting to enter Gaza.

The Respect MP tried to cross the border into Gaza after members of the Viva Palestina convoy were arrested there.

He and collegue Ron McKay arrived at the Rafah border crossing which goes from Gaza into Egypt.

The two men were driven away and placed on a plane back to London by plain-clothed Egyptian police, a Viva Palestina convoy spokeswoman said.


Snow causes chaos for Eruv

By James Martin, January 7, 2010

The North West London Eruv has been "breached" due to the inclement weather.

Orthodox members, who are allowed to carry certain items within a marked area during Shabbat, are being told: "not to assume the eruv will be up" this weekend

People who normally carry certain items such house keys, prayer books and handkerchiefs within a strictly enclosed area, will not be able to carry anything.


Foster care at crisis point in Orthodox community

By Robyn Rosen, January 7, 2010

The strictly Orthodox community is suffering from a serious shortage of foster carers.

Now that Norwood has ended its foster service and another charity is threatening to stop its respite provision, the future looks bleak for children in need.

One in five disabled children in Hackney are from the strictly Orthodox community and there is a constant demand for respite care, where the child is cared for temporarily to help out the parents.


Denham’s new faith advisers

By Leon Symons and Martin Bright, January 7, 2010

Communities secretary John Denham has turned to two leading members of the Jewish interfaith community to help improve the relationship between government and faith communities.

Ros Preston, currently chair of Nightingale House, the old people’s home in south London, and Mehri Niknam, founder and director of the Joseph Interfaith Foundation, are among 13 new advisers who will act as a “sounding board” to give advice on how the government should engage effectively with faith communities.


EastEnders Ross Kemp's guide to the Middle East

By Robyn Rosen, January 7, 2010

Actor and TV presenter Ross Kemp has said he was anxious about the impact of his new programmes on the Israel/Gaza conflict, for fear they could give extremists a “publicity platform”.

Mr Kemp, best known for his work on EastEnders, spent a month in Israel and Gaza for a two-part series which concludes on Sunday (January 10) on Sky1.

The actor, who has also filmed in Afghanistan and Kenya, told Sky News that he made the programme to give access to the on-going and complicated conflict to those who would not usually be interested.


Limmud: How unions strike out at Israel

By Leon Symons, January 7, 2010

The influence that activists in London have on the policies of Palestinians was highlighted during a session at Limmud 2009 on the delegitimisation of Israel.

Calev Ben-Dor, an analyst at the Tel Aviv-based Reut Institute in Israel, told his audience that there were very few Palestinians in London and that “the London narrative was taking over the Palestinians”.


European rabbis attack American conversion group

By Simon Rocker, January 7, 2010

Members of the London Beth Din have attacked a controversial conversion organisation with which their former head, Dayan Chanoch Ehrentreu, is involved.

The LBD judges signed a statement from the Conference of European Rabbis, protesting at the American-based Eternal Jewish Family setting up in Europe and calling for the cancellation on its seminar in Munich this week.