Starmer’s Jewish wife ‘forced out of home’ by anti-Israel protesters

Victoria Starmer was ‘intimidated and scared’ and ‘couldn’t return to her property’ after she came home from shopping with her children, a court has heard


Protesters with Youth Demand sat outside Labour leader Keir Starmer's house on Tuesday to demand he use his influence to 'call on a two-way arms embargo on Israel' (Photo: Screenshot via X)

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer’s wife Victoria was “effectively forced out of her own home” after pro-Palestine demonstrators launched a protest outside the couple’s north London front garden, a court has been told.

On Tuesday, demonstrators from Youth Demand — a new direct-action group affiliated with the environmental activist organisation Just Stop Oil — campaigned outside the Starmer family’s house to pressure the Labour leader to use his influence to stop the UK sending arms to Israel.

Three demonstrators, identified as Leonorah Ward, 21, Zosia Lewis, 23, and Daniel Formentin, 24, were accused of hanging a black banner outside Starmer’s house that read, “Starmer stop the killing,” surrounded by red handprints. The three demonstrators are also accused of placing rows of children’s shoes in front of the Starmers’ front door to symbolise the deaths of children in Gaza.

Prosecutor David Burns told Westminster Magistrates’ Court that Victoria “returned from a shopping trip with her son and couldn’t return to her property,” adding that she was “intimidated and scared” by the actions of the protesters.

Burns said: “This really affected [Keir’s] wife, she was effectively forced out of her own home.”

Ward, Lewis and Formentin were charged with harassing a person in their home under section 42 of the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001 and breaching court bail conditions, namely “not to organise or participate” in any protest connected to Just Stop Oil.

The three deny public order offences.

According to the Times, the three protesters also denied the charge of breaching bail conditions on the basis that Just Stop Oil and Youth Demand were separate organisations.

Youth Demand posted a video on its social media accounts of the protesters setting up the banner and sitting on the pavement in front of it with a Palestinian flag, as one of the demonstrators said: “Starmer is the leader of the Labour party and he’s got enormous power, enormous influence, and he can call on a two-way arms embargo on Israel, stop sending UK-made weapons over that are being used to cause genocide.

“He can also stop the Tory oil and gas licenses, he can revoke them,” she added.

On Monday the group sprayed the Labour party HQ in Southwark, London with red paint and, on Wednesday, they targeted the Ministry of Defence building in the same way. Both protests led to numerous arrests.

Starmer, whose wife is Jewish and has family in Israel, told LBC in December: “We stand by our Jewish communities here and we stand by Israel internationally”.

All three defendants were given a bail condition ordering them not to participate in any procession or static assembly. They will next appear at the same court on June 19.

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