UK news

Human rights group takes UK to court over Israel sanctions

By Simon Rocker, February 25, 2010

A Palestinian human rights group is making a fresh attempt through the courts to force the British government to adopt sanctions against Israel.

The West Bank-based Al Haq wants a ruling that Britain is in breach of its human rights obligations by failing to take action.

The group, represented by the Birmingham-based Public Interest Lawyers, lost an application for a judicial review to hear its case in the High Court last year.

But an appeal, which will be contested by the Foreign Office, was due to begin in the Court of Appeal yesterday.


Faith schools must teach sex and contraception

By Simon Rocker, February 25, 2010

State-aided religious schools will have to teach about contraception and ceremonies for gay couples in future, according to new rules being introduced by the government.

Ed Balls, the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, stressed that faith schools would not be able to opt out of new requirements for sex education, due to come into force next year.


Jewish campaigners attack UK asylum seeker treatment

By Leon Symons, February 25, 2010

Three Jewish human rights leaders and three rabbis have launched an attack in a national newspaper on the way the government treats the children of asylum seekers.

Their action followed a report by the Children's Commissioner, Sir Al Aynsley-Green, which highlighted the arrest and transportation procedures children had to undergo and the living conditions at Yarl's Wood detention centre in Bedfordshire.


Stanley Fink: Election will split Jews

By Candice Krieger, February 25, 2010

Stanley Fink, co-treasurer of the Conservative Party, says it remains anybody's guess as to which way the Jewish community will vote at the forthcoming general election.


Family grieve for go-kart death girl Amy

By Robyn Rosen, February 25, 2010

The grieving brother of a teenager who died after a go-karting accident in Hong Kong this week spoke of his trauma at her death.
Amy Coxall, 15, was driving with friends at the Diamond Coast International Kart Circuit in Tuen Mun when her kart veered off the track.

It is thought that her scarf had become entangled in the machine and she was pronounced dead on arrival at the Tuen Mun Hospital on Wednesday.

Amy was a pupil at Ilford Jewish Primary School for two months in 1999 before a change in her father's job took the family from their home in Gants Hill to Hong Kong.


Fury at Muslim hate speaker invited to universities

By Marcus Dysch, February 25, 2010

Three universities have been slammed for hosting an extremist Muslim who has expressed antisemitic views. Sheikh Abdullah Hakim Quick has previously denounced Jews and homosexuals as "filth".

He was due to speak at King's College London yesterday after being invited by its Islamic Society.

The Qabeelat Al Shams group, a student section of the Islamic education group Al Maghrib Institute, asked him to appear at the University of East London (UEL) this weekend and at City University last week.


Colonel Richard Kemp blasts media's Israel coverage

By Jenni Frazer, February 25, 2010

A leading defence figure has warned of "dark forces" exploiting the international media, including the BBC, and insisted that some criticism of Israel "is based on antisemitism".
Retired Colonel Richard Kemp told a 400-strong audience at the Zionist Federation's 110th anniversary dinner it had been a "privilege" to work alongside members of the Israel Defence Forces during his 30-year career.


Charedi father told to demolish family home

By Marcus Dysch, February 25, 2010

A Charedi father must demolish his family home after losing a planning dispute with a council.

Jacob Dreyfuss, president of Stamford Hill's Stolin-Karlin synagogue, rebuilt his two-storey home without planning permission, to add a cellar and a loft extension.

Hackney Council issued an enforcement notice and he appealed against it without success.

The government's Planning Inspectorate has now given him a year to "remove the unauthorised house".


Reform Jews grill Chris Grayling on arrest law

By Marcus Dysch, February 25, 2010

Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling said this week that he was unsure whether it was necessary to change the law on universal jurisdiction.

He was speaking to two dozen members of the Reform community at the Sternberg Centre in Finchley, north west London, on Monday evening.

Audience members grilled him on how a prospective Tory administration would tackle the issue of universal jurisdiction.


Britain now nerve centre for Hamas support

By Martin Bright, February 25, 2010

The full extent of the Hamas political and propaganda operation in Britain has been revealed in a shocking new report into the Palestinian terror organisation's supporters in this country.

According to the Israel-based Intelligence and Terrorism Information Centre, Britain has become a hub for Hamas activities in Europe, including virulently antisemitic propaganda aimed at children.

The report identifies Britain as a vital strategic centre for the terror group and names key Hamas activists in this country.

Many of them cannot be named for legal reasons.