UK news

Israelis cheer England goal

By Jennifer Lipman, June 23, 2010

Staff at the Israeli embassy in London took a break from work to watch England play to stay in the World Cup.

A big cheer went up in the office as the first goal was scored against Slovenia by Jermain Defoe.


Chief Rabbi slams Methodist report

By Simon Rocker, June 23, 2010

The Chief Rabbi and other Jewish presidents of the Council of Christians and Jews (CCJ) have expressed their concern about a report on Israel prepared by the Methodist Church.

The document, which is to be debated at the church's national conference later this month, calls for a boycott of goods from "illegal" West Bank settlements, and political lobbying to end Israel's occupation and the "siege of Gaza".

The Methodist Church has already faced criticism for demonising Israel from Jewish organisations in London and Manchester.


Yiddishe Momma advert removed by eBay

By Robyn Rosen, June 22, 2010

An advert for a Yiddishe Momma has been pulled from auction website eBay for breaching its “human body parts and remains policy”.

James Doyan, a management consultant from Crouch End, decided to auction his mother, Sandi Firth from Leeds, on Ebay after “having enough of her exploits in trying to find love”.

He placed an ad for the 63-year-old grandmother last week with the title: “My Yiddishe Momma for sale. Beautiful, great cook, educated, articulate, family focused, caring – priceless”.


Stolen jewellery recovered

By Jonathan Kalmus, June 22, 2010

A synagogue is to display a hoard of jewellery suspected of being stolen from Jewish people in Manchester and Liverpool so owners can claim back their property.

Greater Manchester Police are to run an open day at Liverpool's Allerton Synagogue on July 7 after they recovered a large amount of suspected stolen jewellery and silverware during an ongoing investigation by the Force's money laundering unit.

Photographs of the stolen articles will be on display from 3pm as part of a number of open days to glean information to assist the investigation.


Jewish MP to be senior cabinet aide

By Jennifer Lipman, June 22, 2010

A Jewish MP has been appointed as a parliamentary private secretary to the Secretary of State for Transport.

Lee Scott, who has represented Ilford North for the Conservatives since 2005, will serve as senior aide to cabinet minister Philip Hammond and will attend meetings of the transport ministerial team.

He was a member of the transport select committee during the last parliament. At the 2010 election Mr Scott increased his parliamentary majority by 3.7 per cent.

During the campaign he received death threats and said he had been targeted for his support of Israel.


Jeremiah Duggan inquest reopened

By Jennifer Lipman, June 22, 2010

A new inquest into the death of a British Jewish student in Germany has opened, more than seven years after he died.

Jeremiah Duggan was found dead on a highway near Wiesbaden, Germany in March 2003 while attending a youth event organised by the far-right LaRouche group, which is alleged to have antisemitic connections.

German police said that the 22-year-old had committed suicide but Mr Duggan’s family and friends have campaigned for his death to be investigated fully.


Hate preacher banned from UK

By Leon Symons, June 18, 2010

Muslim preacher Zakir Naik has been banned by Home Secretary Theresa May from coming to Britain.

Mrs May said: “I have excluded Dr Naik from the UK. Numerous comments made by Dr Naik are evidence to me of his unacceptable behaviour.

“Coming to the UK is a privilege, not a right, and I am not willing to allow those who might not be conducive to the public good to enter the UK. Exclusion powers are very serious and no decision is taken lightly or as a method of stopping open debate on issues.”


Grandmother, 63, put on eBay

By Robyn Rosen, June 18, 2010

When 63-year-old grandmother Sandi Firth asked her son to put her dining room table on eBay for her, she had no idea it was not the only thing he was planning to sell.

The next day he called to tell her that he had placed another item in the Collectibles category on the auction website - his very own "Yiddishe Momma".

James Doyan, a 38-year-old management consultant, said he decided to auction his mother, who lives in Leeds, after "having enough of her exploits in trying to find love".


Boy cautioned for attack on Israeli dep ambassador

By Marcus Dysch and Jonathan Kalmus, June 18, 2010

The Israeli Embassy has criticised the decision to caution a 16-year-old boy who attempted to attack its deputy ambassador at a university campus.

The embassy called for a stricter punishment, saying the teenager had "crossed a line" when he climbed on the bonnet of Talya Lador-Fresher's car and attempted to smash the windscreen. The deputy ambassador said she had feared she would be physically assaulted.

Ms Lador-Fresher had been speaking to members of Manchester University's Politics Society in April. Around 40 demonstrators had gathered at the venue.


Parliament discusses Gaza flotilla fall-out

By Marcus Dysch and Jessica Elgot, June 17, 2010

British and European parliamentarians took part in a trio of debates this week to discuss the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and wider Middle East issues.

On Monday evening, the House of Commons discussed the government's policy on the region. Most of the debate centred on the fall-out from the Gaza flotilla incident.

There were calls for the government to ban arms sales to Israel and impose boycott, divestment and sanctions policies. James Arbuthnot, chairman of Conservative Friends of Israel, admitted that Israel "makes mistakes" and criticised settlement building.