Jewish BBC broadcaster resigns over antisemitism

Rabbi YY Rubinstein has been a BBC contributor for 30 years


A Jewish BBC broadcaster has resigned after 30 years of working with the corporation because of concerns about antisemitism. 

Rabbi YY Rubinstein, a frequent contributor to BBC programming including The BBC Radio Two religious affairs show “Good Morning Sunday as well as Radio 4’s Thought for the day, has released a letter of resignation to the corporation in which he said: “I simply don’t see how I or in fact any Jew who has any pride in that name can be associated with the Corporation anymore.”

In his letter, Rabbi Rubinstein describes the current crisis over anti-Semitism at the Corporation as “simply inexcusable”, citing the BBC’s coverage of the Oxford Street Chanukah antisemitic attack. 

He said that: “The obfuscation and denial that followed, was and is utterly damning.”
The BBC has attracted widespread criticism for a report in the aftermath of the Oxford Street incident in which it was alleged by the broadcaster that anti-muslim slurs could be heard from inside the bus of threatened teenagers. 

Jewish community leaders and campaign groups have called on the BBC to retract and apologise for the report with the Board of Deputies commissioning an independent investigation into the video which found no evidence of Anti-Muslim slurs. 

The Campaign Against Antisemitism also held a rally outside the BBC’s headquarters in Central London to demand the BBC ‘Stop blaming Jews.’

Board of Deputies President Marie van der Zyl is set to meet BBC Director-General Tim Davie in the coming weeks to discuss the incident. 

A BBC spokesperson said: “We are sorry to hear of Rabbi YY Rubinstein’s decision as he has always provided thoughtful and compassionate contributions to our programmes, which have been deeply appreciated by our listeners. Anti-Semitism is abhorrent and we strive to serve the Jewish community, and all communities across the UK, fairly.”

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