UK news

Chinn sets out plan to aid London’s poor

By Candice Krieger, July 3, 2008

Sir Trevor Chinn, the newly appointed chair of the Mayor’s Fund for London, says he plans to use his experience working in deprived areas of Israel to help transform London.

A Labour supporter and philanthropist, Sir Trevor, 72, was approached by the new Conservative mayor Boris Johnson to head the fund, which will tap private wealth to help tackle London’s social problems.


You can’t be Hizbollah now: UK to ban support for group

By Bernard Josephs, July 3, 2008

Support for the armed wing of the Lebanese Hizbollah militia is to be barred under Britain’s anti-terrorism laws, the Home Office announced on Wednesday.

The group’s external security organisation was already included in the government’s list of outlawed terror groups, drawn up under legislation passed eight years ago. Now Hizbollah’s entire military structure is to be banned. This reflects UK anger that the organisation, which faced Israel in the second Lebanon war, also supports terrorism against British troops in Iraq.


Apprentice star Sugar quits Amstrad

By Candice Krieger, July 2, 2008

Sir Alan Sugar has stepped down as chairman of Amstrad, the electronics company he founded 40 years ago.

The 61-year-old star of BBC Ones’s Apprentice said the departure was a "planned move" following the company's acquisition by BSkyB last year.

But the self-made multi-millionaire is not retiring. He will continue to be involved with his other business interests, including Amshold, Amsprop, Amsair and Viglen computers.


Sunshine, speeches and a salute to solidarity

By Leon Symons, June 30, 2008

The streets of central London and Manchester were awash with blue and white on Sunday as the community turned out in force to mark Israel’s 60th birthday.

Police did not formally issue crowd figures, but organisers claimed that up to 40,000 people turned out in London for a parade and Trafalgar Square rally, with more than 6,000 at the Manchester parade and party.

In London, unofficial police sources estimated that there were around 8,000 people in Trafalgar Square at any one time, and that 6,000 people joined the carnival parade.


Hague tells Friends of Israel: I’m a Zionist

By Dana Gloger, June 27, 2008

Shadow Foreign Secretary William Hague declared on Wednesday that he considers himself a Zionist.

In a question-and-answer session for the Conservative Friends of Israel annual business lunch, Mr Hague was asked by JC columnist Times journalist Danny Finkelstein if he thought of himself as a Zionist. He said: “I believe in the existence of Israel and in its safety and democracy, so yes, I am.”


Parents ‘won’t pay’ to support Jewish studies

By Simon Rocker, June 27, 2008

Too many parents are refusing to contribute to the cost of their children’s religious education, say governors in some Jewish day schools.

Although state-aided Jewish schools are mainly government-funded, it is common for them to request around £1,000 per child from parents annually to cover Jewish studies and security.

But Lee Glassar, a governor at the Michael Sobell Sinai Primary School in Kenton, North-West London, said “a significant number” decline to pay.


JC’s anthrax hoaxer escapes jail

By Dana Gloger, June 27, 2008

A man who sent a letter containing white powder to the JC’s offices escaped jail last week.

Ashraf Ali, 31, pleaded guilty last month to seven offences, five of them religiously aggravated.

Ali was given a nine-month sentence at Portsmouth Crown Court last Friday, but this was suspended for two years. He was also given a two-year supervision order.

The charges related to two offences of blackmail, four counts of racial or religiously aggravated harassment and one count of religiously aggravated intentional harassment.


Kinder refugee recalls ‘awful’ swastika letter

June 27, 2008

An 83-year-old refugee from Nazi Germany spoke this week of the “hurt” of being the victim of a campaign of antisemitic and threatening letters. The material came from a Portsmouth postman  who has just received a four-year jail sentence.

In February 2005, Julius Klein, who came to Britain on the Kindertransport aged 14 in 1939, received an envelope containing a swastika-daubed paper. There were references to Adolf Hitler and the number 18, often associated with Hitler, whose initials are the first and eighth numbers of the alphabet.


Men who ‘conned’ two shuls hunted by police

By Leon Symons, June 27, 2008

Police in London are searching for two alleged Israeli conmen who are said have obtained thousands of pounds in “loans” from gullible synagogue members.

The two, saying they were an uncle and nephew, are said to have asked for and received more than £8,000 in loans from members of one synagogue and smaller amounts from another. Although they returned some of the money, they have since disappeared and are believed to have left behind unpaid bills at the Langham Hilton Hotel in London’s West End, where it is understood they had been staying since the end of March.


Cambridge first for former anorexic

By Candice Krieger, June 27, 2008

Recovering anorexic Mandy Kaye made history this week as she graduated from Cambridge with starred first-class honours and a distinction — the only student in her geography faculty to do so.

But it could have all been so different for the 25-year-old, who, five years ago, was given just days to live.

Ms Kaye, from Southgate, North London, has been battling anorexia for nine years. At her lowest, she weighed just under five stone.

Now, hopeful of a making full recovery, she is determined to inspire others to do the same.