UK news

Mike Leigh wins praise at Cannes

By Jessica Elgot, May 18, 2010

Jewish film director Mike Leigh is a strong favourite for the coveted Palm D’Or at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, after a rapturous reception for his new film, Another Year.

If he wins, it would be Mr Leigh’s third award at Cannes; he won the Palm D’Or for his 1996 film Secrets and Lies, and Best Director in 1993 for Naked.


'Nazi zealot' milkman and father sentenced

By Leon Symons, May 14, 2010

A father and son described as “Nazi zealots” have been jailed for a total of 12 years at Newcastle Crown Court.

Ian Davison, a 41-year-old disc jockey, became the first man in England and Wales to be convicted of a terrorism-related offence involving the lethal poison ricin. He was given 10 years in prison.

Davison, from County Durham, had already pleaded guilty to six offences including production of the ricin.


Anti-Israel demo planned for David Cameron

By Jessica Elgot, May 14, 2010

Film director Ken Loach, Lib Dem peer Jenny Tonge, comedian Jeremy Hardy and Sir Gerald Kaufman MP are signatories to a petition which will be delivered to Downing St as part of an anti-Israel march this weekend.

It will be the first organised rally outside Downing Street since David Cameron became Prime Minister.

Representatives of the Green Party, UNITE, UNISON, Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Stop the War Coalition and CND are also planning to attend.


New Jewish ministers and the Miliband rivalry

By Jessica Elgot, May 14, 2010

The one-time BBYO leader, Grant Shapps, has been appointed Housing Minister in David Cameron’s new government.

Mr Shapps, who represents Welwyn and Hatfield, is a former vice-chairman of the Conservative Party. He will be part of the Department for Communities and Local Government, headed by Eric Pickles.

Oliver Letwin, once Shadow Chancellor when Michael Howard led the party, has been made Minister of State for Policy, and will attend cabinet meetings when required.


Cruel email scam targets Holocaust 'heirs'

By Robyn Rosen, May 13, 2010

An email fraudster has been targeting the community claiming that people with the same surnames as Holocaust victims can collect millions of dollars.

The email tells the recipient there is a dormant bank account belonging to a Holocaust victim with the same name, and urges them to reply within seven days to receive the funds.

The writer claims to be an executive director at the Swiss Banks Settlement, which in reality retrieved $1.25 billion from Swiss banks in 1998. The banks had retained and concealed assets of Holocaust victims.


Jaeger boss: Tax breaks for ethical fashion

By Robyn Rosen, May 13, 2010

Harold Tillman, the owner of Jaeger and chairman of the British Fashion Council, has called for tax-breaks for "eco-fashion" businesses.

The recommendation is part of a campaign spearheaded by Mr Tillman which urges fashion businesses to work in a more sustainable way and make eco-fashion more affordable to consumers.

Mr Tillman, a member of Highgate Synagogue, said ethical and sustainable fashion ranged from the fabrics to the machinery used to produce the clothes.


Zionist Congress swings to the left

By Simon Rocker, May 13, 2010

At least one "election" turned left this week: Britain's delegation to the Zionist Congress in Jerusalem.

After horse-trading which almost puts Labour, the Lib Dems and the Conservatives in the shade, the majority of Britain's delegation will come from the religious and political left.

The Zionist Supreme Court has issued a ruling on the UK's 19 delegates following appeals from the Progressive religious Zionist movement, Pro-Zion, and the Jewish Labour Movement.


Jewish psychic sues management for £1m

By Marcus Dysch, May 13, 2010

A psychic has started High Court proceedings against his former management company, claiming he is owed £1 million.

Colin Fry, who hosted the TV show 6ixth Sense, in which he explores the world of the paranormal, has applied for an injunction to freeze the assets of International Programme Marketing (IPM).

Mr Fry, who is Jewish, claims IPM failed to pay him a fair share of profits from his touring show, in which he demonstrates "mediumship".

IPM had managed his business affairs since 2000.


Student 'considered quitting' over Leeds story

By Marcus Dysch, May 13, 2010

A university student union officer has admitted he considered resigning after being criticised for censoring a student paper.

The paper had published an interview interpreted as suggesting Jews control the media.

Jak Codd, Leeds University Union communications and internal affairs officer, helped take the decision to remove, temporarily, copies of Leeds Student from the Union building a fortnight ago.

The paper's Laura Mackenzie had interviewed Sameh Habeeb, the founder and editor of the online Palestine Telegraph, about his experiences during last year's Gaza conflict.


Police to investigate Manchester student protest

May 13, 2010

Fallout has continued this week from the violence which surrounded a visit to Manchester University by Israel's deputy ambassador.

Manchester's top police officer spoke out to condemn last month's attack on Talya Lador-Fresher. Jewish communal organisations have also requested a meeting with university representatives to formulate a plan for avoiding future disturbances.