UK news

Survivors and Holocaust projects get cash injection

By Jonny Paul, January 15, 2009

Just two weeks before Holocaust Memorial Day, survivors and educational projects in Britain have received a new financial boost from the Claims Conference.

The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, which works to secure compensation and restitution for survivors of the Holocaust, has allocated more than $2.6m for Nazi victim services in the UK for 2009, an increase of more than $100,000 from 2008.

The Association of Jewish Refugees (AJR), which distributes the money to UK survivors, has welcomed the increase.


More space for worship advised

By Leon Symons, January 15, 2009

New housing developments should have a specific area set aside to create facilities for faith communities, according to a newly-published report.

Construction companies should be told that they must set aside half a hectare (1.23 acres) of empty land in developments to enable faith communities to erect their own buildings, said Cambridgeshire Horizons, the organisation which produced the report “Building for Faith in the Future” and which is responsible for identifying new communities in the East Anglian county.


Miliband puts faith in democracy

By Leon Symons, January 15, 2009

Foreign Secretary David Miliband has called on Israel “as a beacon of democracy” to help find a political solution to its conflict with Hamas.

He told MPs that Israel argued against accepting UN resolutions which saw equivalence between a democratic state and a terrorist organisation.

“There is and can be no equivalence,” said Mr Miliband. Hamas had shown itself over a number of years “ready to be murderous in word and deed”.


Rabbis' letter shows agony over conflict

By Simon Rocker, January 15, 2009

A newspaper letter signed by leaders of the UK’s two Progressive movements and the leading Jewish interfaith activist, revealed growing unease within the community over Israel’s military campaign.

Published in the Observer, it voiced concern that Israel’s actions could “strengthen extremists” while civilian casualties threatened to “undermine international support for Israel”.


Students resolve to fight campus antisemitism

January 15, 2009

The National Executive of the National Union of Students has passed a complex resolution on the Gaza conflict which has been warmly welcomed by the leadership of the Union of Jewish Students.

As students all over Britain began the new winter term with the fighting in Gaza still heading the news, the NUS was well aware that its membership covers both sides of the divide.

The NUS President, Wes Streeting, made it clear that “we shouldn’t pretend that NUS can speak with one voice on the complexities of this conflict.”


SOAS Palestinians fail to ban Israel lectures

By Jonny Paul, January 15, 2009

The University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies has refused to cancel a series of lectures marking the centenary of Tel Aviv.

A Palestinian pressure group demanded that the series, organised by the Centre for Jewish Studies, did not go ahead, claiming it was “morally repulsive” to be celebrating Tel Aviv “while Gaza burns”.

The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) called on the university to cancel the “ill-conceived propaganda exercise.”


Pensioner dies after crash

January 15, 2009

A pedestrian has died after an accident with a car on Thursday.

Anthony Levy, 78, from Hendon, was involved in a collision with a VW people carrier in Golders Green Road, North West London. Mr Levy was taken to Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead suffering from a head injury but died in the early hours of Friday morning. An inquest at Hornsey Coroners’ Court was opened and adjourned.

Sgt Chris Osborne of the police Collision Investigation Unit has appealed for any witnesses to call either 020 8998 5319 or Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.


Charity’s founder is honoured by Queen

January 15, 2009

A 94-year-old London woman has been awarded a CBE for her services to charity.

Sue Hammerson was originally created an OBE in 1981 for her charitable work. She is the founder of the old-age home, Hammerson House, in Bishop’s Avenue, Hampstead, which opened in July 1962. It was named in memory of her late husband, Lewis. Mr Hammerson died in 1958 aged 42.


Masked gang attack father with hammer

By Jonathan Kalmus, January 15, 2009

A young father was beaten with a hammer in front of his heavily pregnant wife in an armed robbery on their home.

Their children, aged two, three and six, slept while three masked men smashed through the family’s front door at around 7.30pm.

Running upstairs, they demanded rent money, appearing to know that the victim collected rent for his property business.

“They repeated ‘where’s the money?’, again and again,” said the 27-year-old, who did not want to be named for fear of reprisals.


Games off as players join rally

By Craig Silver, January 15, 2009

Most Jewish football games were postponed so players could attend the rallies in London and Manchester.

Only nine matches were played in the MSFL, MJSL and Masters Leagues following an agreement between the league and teams. But there was no blanket postponement of fixtures.