UK news

Co-op rejects boycott

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 27, 2011

The Co-operative Group has thrown out a boycott motion calling for complete severance of trade with Israel.

A motion submitted by the group's South and West membership region on Saturday declared: "This annual general meeting resolves that our Society stops the sale of all Israeli goods."

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Liverpool first Arab film fest

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 27, 2011

Liverpool's first Arab film festival is to host three anti-Israel films and the French filmmaker Michel Kheifi, whose work was banned in France over concerns it whipped up antisemitism.

The July festival is a new addition to the Liverpool Arabic Arts Festival which is in its ninth year and is sponsored by the National Lottery, the British Council and Liverpool City Council.

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London Citizens' statement on Junaid Ahmed

May 26, 2011

A statement from chair of trustees Paul O'Shea:

"London Citizens exists to strengthen civil society and public life in London. We offer politics and negotiation, as the best ways of creating change and encourage all our 250 member institutions to work together for the common good.

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Letter to UCU general secretary Sally Hunt

May 26, 2011

Dear Ms Hunt,

We write to you about troubling developments in UCU.

As you know, since UCU was formed in 2007 it has consistently passed policies promoting boycotts of Israeli academics, even after stating that a boycott was unlawful because it would contravene UCU's own equality and anti-discrimination policy as well as anti-discrimination law.

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Blair: Palestinians have 'no alternative' to peace process

By Marcus Dysch, May 26, 2011

Tony Blair has said Israel and the Palestinians have "no alternative" other than a return to the peace process.

The Quartet's Middle East envoy said it was crucial to support the Palestinian economy in order to advance the possibilities of success in the process.

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WZO chief makes case

By Simon Rocker, May 26, 2011

A leading member of the World Zionist Organisation has been overseeing plans in the UK to promote aliyah and encourage Israelis to return.

Menachem Lebovic, deputy chair of Keren Kayemet Le'israel, said he hoped to "close the deal" shortly on opening an aliyah centre here.

Nearly 800 people make Aliyah from Britain annually. In 2005, the figure hit a low of under 350.

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The wedding panners of Stamford Hill

By Robyn Rosen, May 26, 2011

A strictly Orthodox man featured in a BBC documentary about Chasidic weddings has been ostracised by his synagogue congregation.

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Tesco ban on the Protocols

By Robyn Rosen, May 26, 2011

Tesco has stopped selling The Protocols of the Elders of Zion after a shopper threatened to boycott the supermarket until it removed the controversial book from its website.

Rachel Amdurer, a 44-year-old teaching assistant from Halifax, was searching for Jewish books when she saw the antisemitic forgery for sale.

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Cameron leaves the JNF

By Simon Rocker, May 26, 2011

JNF UK has declined to say why Prime Minister David Cameron's name has disappeared from its list of honorary patrons.

Twelve days ago the pro-Palestinian Stop the JNF campaign wrote to Mr Cameron, reiterating a previous request for him to withdraw as patron of the charity.

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Death of the Holocaust's quiet hero

By Simon Rocker, May 26, 2011

The veteran Zionist, Arieh Handler, who died last week in Tel Aviv aged 95, was the last surviving witness of the declaration of the state of Israel.

For many years he was the embodiment of religious Zionism in the UK as the founder of the national branch of Bnei Akiva and as a leader of Mizrachi UK before he finally made aliyah at the age of 90.

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