UK news

Think tank chief attacks UJS

April 16, 2010

An anti-extremism campaigner has attacked the Union of Jewish Students and claimed the organisation bowed to pressure from Islamic students by withdrawing an invitation to him to appear in a panel debate.

Douglas Murray, director of the Centre for Social Cohesion think tank, was expected to speak at the National Union of Students conference in Gateshead on Thursday night.

But he claims UJS dropped him after the Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) refused to share a platform with him.


Karen Buck: the full interview

By Martin Bright, April 15, 2010

Westminster is a very diverse community. Is it not divisive to concentrate on the interests of one group?

Westminster is indeed a very diverse part of London and contains many communities. The vast majority of my correspondence with constituents has been, as one would rightly expect, in English but I feel it is important to try to reach out to people within each of the different communities in Westminster by whatever means is most appropriate.


The Arabs, the Jew and the quiet eco-project

By Robyn Rosen, April 15, 2010

It is the great unreported story of the Middle East: that, despite the conflict in the region, an Israeli, a Palestinian, and a Jordanian have been quietly working together for nearly 20 years to protect their shared environment.

And in London this week, the three co-directors of the Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME) spoke about their "shared vision" at a fundraising event held by the New Israel Fund.


UK football leagues lose Israel case

By Robyn Rosen, April 15, 2010

The English and Scottish Football Leagues have lost a case against an Israeli football pools company after accusing it of copyright infringement.

The Israel Sports Betting Board (ISBB) runs Toto, the weekly Israel football pools and Winner, which bets on individual matches.

There are not enough matches played locally through the year for the ISBB to rely on local fixtures so they select fixtures from the English and Scottish leagues.


Sheriff throws out concert protest case

By Stephanie Brickman, April 15, 2010

A Scottish sheriff has thrown out a case against five Scottish Palestinian Solidarity Campaign protesters who disrupted a concert by an Israeli classical ensemble.

Five people, Michael (Mick) Napier, Neil Forbes, Sophia McLeod, Kevin Conner and Vanessa Fuertes, were arrested after disrupting a performance by the Jerusalem Quartet at the Edinburgh Festival in August, 2008. They shouted: "These are Israeli army musicians. Genocide in Gaza. End the siege of Gaza."


Party firms deny exploiting charities

By Marcus Dysch, April 15, 2010

The directors of two promotions companies have defended themselves against allegations that they short-changed a Jewish charity and misled it over the share of the profit it would receive from a club night.

Danny Macabi, of Nana Life Events, and Darren Bloom, of Electric Parties, promote parties which have become the highlight of the social calendar for young Jewish professionals, often attracting up to 600 revellers to each event.


Orthodox delight as sex education plan binned

By Simon Rocker, April 15, 2010

A strictly Orthodox schools spokesman has welcomed the shelving of new proposals on sex education.

The government was forced to drop them because there was insufficient time to get the measures through Parliament before the general election.

Rabbi Jonathan Guttentag, convener of the National Association of Orthodox Schools, said: "I'm delighted they have been thrown out. It would have been impossible for strictly Orthodox schools to have complied with them. It was a collision course and it would not have been responsible to go down such a route."


Confusion over move for Yemeni Jews to UK

By Marcus Dysch, April 15, 2010

A small number of Yemeni Jews may "imminently" move to Britain, although there is confusion over the government's role in their possible resettlement here.

There have been plans for more than a year to help Jews from Yemen escape persecution by moving to join family members already living in Stamford Hill's strictly Orthodox community.

The Independent newspaper claimed this week that the Foreign Office is on the verge of agreeing a secret deal with Yemeni authorities.


Northampton synagogue discovered under kebab shop

By Marcus Dysch, April 15, 2010

The remains of a 13th century synagogue have been uncovered in the most unlikely of places - underneath a Northampton halal kebab shop.

Archaeologists discovered what they believe to be a staircase and walls 12ft below the cellar of the Kebabish takeaway, and a neighbouring pub.

The find came after painstaking radar surveys and non-intrusive investigations carried out using 3D imagery technology.

Marcus Roberts, director of JTrails, the National Anglo-Jewish Heritage Trail, located the site after spending more than 20 years researching Northampton's Jewish history.


£50k cash boost for the CST

By Marcus Dysch, April 15, 2010

The Community Security Trust is to receive £48,869 of government funding to help the fight against antisemitism.

The grant awarded to CST is the largest single sum given to an organisation as part of the Home Office's Hate Crime Action plan which tackles disability, race, religion, sexuality and transgender hate crimes.

CST was one of only eight organisations to receive funds. More than 40 others were rejected.