Anti-Israel activists are planning one of the biggest demonstrations since the Israel-Hamas war began on October 7 later this month in London.
The Palestinian Forum in Britain (PFB) along with Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Friends of Al-Aqsa, the Stop the War Coalition, Muslim Association of Britain and Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament are organising ‘a global day of action’ on January 13.
The JC understands coaches are being laid on for activists from various cities including Birmingham in an attempt to generate the highest attendance possible. Demonstrations are also being planned in various towns and cities across the UK.
Calls have now been issued urging the Metropolitan Police to ban the planned demonstrations. Anti-Israel protests over the last few months have been dubbed ‘hate marches’ by former Home Secretary Suella Braverman.
In a joint statement, the six groups accused Israel of “genocidal” acts in the Gaza Strip, where IDF soldiers are conducting a military operation.
They added: “Israel’s genocidal war on Gaza has now killed over 20,000 Palestinians with thousands more missing and presumed dead under the rubble of their own homes.
“It has left 1.7 million displaced, sheltering where they can and facing an outbreak of major epidemics.
“The international community is failing to act by demanding that Israel cease its assault and lift the siege to bring the slaughter to an end and ensure urgent humanitarian aid can be brought to the people of Gaza.”
The statement continued: “Across the world the solidarity movement has acted to mobilise millions of people to the streets demanding a permanent ceasefire. We need to intensify this pressure by coordinating actions across the globe.
“We call for a day of action for Gaza on January 13th and support the call from Palestinian civil society to unite to call for a permanent ceasefire, to stop the Gaza Genocide, to end the occupation and dismantle Israeli apartheid.”
Thousands of demonstrators have converged on London over the past few weekends. Around 300 people have been arrested at anti-Israel marches in London between October and December, many for displaying offensive placards.
Last Saturday, hundreds of anti-Israel activists descended on Downing Street chanting “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” dozens of times. Chants of “Israel is a terror state” and “from the sea to the river Palestine forever” were also heard.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer were also branded “despicable” for their stance on the war.
A representative from the PFB told the crowd: “You [Rishi Sunak] call us an aggressor when our people resist when it’s actually our right as a colonised people under international law.
“You call it a hate march when we demand an immediate ceasefire.”
Anti-Israel activists and supporters wave flags and carry placards during a National March for Palestine in central London on December 9, 2023 (Photo: Getty)
Met Police officers also appeared to watch on as the controversial “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” chant was shouted countless times, despite calls from Government ministers for it to be considered a hate crime. Police said there were no arrests.
A spokesperson for the Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) told the JC: “2023 was a horrendous year for the Jewish community.
“Our urban centres have become no-go zones for Jews.
“We have witnessed at these rallies mass criminality, including glorification of terrorism, support for banned terrorist organisations such as Hamas, and incitement to racial or religious hatred against Jews.
"If Britain is to remain a bastion of tolerance and decency, the authorities must finally take action."
The Met Police were approached for comment.