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Posts tagged ‘The Board of Deputies of British Jews’

Controversial antisemitism ‘definition’ faces resistance over free speech concerns

Pro-Israel groups in Britain are facing resistance in their attempts to use a controversial definition of anti-Semitism to stifle Palestine solidarity activism. Concerns over free speech are being heeded by universities and local authorities, in what is a boost for Palestine rights activists currently holding, or preparing to hold, Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) events on campuses nationwide. Read more

Pro-Israel activists smear student solidarity with Palestine

Israel advocacy groups and individuals are seeking to undermine Palestine solidarity activism on British campuses, using Islamophobic abuse and false accusations of antisemitism.

Last Thursday, former Israeli army officer Hen Mazzig, who served in the occupied West Bank as part of the Israeli occupation authorities’ forces, was invited to speak at University College London (UCL) by the Friends of Israel student society. Read more

Moves to silence critics of Israel have made the debate about Zionism unstoppable

By now, it is clear that the UK Labour Party’s so-called “crisis” of anti-Semitism is being used to delegitimise anti-Zionism by groups and individuals who see the two as one and the same thing. It is that conflation I want to address, and specifically, how it is only possible through the dehumanisation and disappearance of the Palestinians. Read more

How a church was smeared for an exhibition about Israeli occupation

When a Methodist church in central London decided to hold a small exhibition about life for Palestinians under Israeli occupation, its members probably did not expect to be smeared as antisemites in the pages of The Times.

Yet that is precisely what happened to the members of Hinde Street Methodist church in Marylebone, in response to its “You cannot pass today” event, held as part of an annual “World Week for Peace in Palestine/Israel”. Read more

Israel and friends battle the boycott in Britain

On February 17, British Cabinet Minister Matthew Hancock stood alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, and announced the publication of “new guidance” for local authorities concerning procurement. The move was trailed – and presented by the government – as designed to ‘ban’ boycotts of Israeli goods and services by councils.

But did the procurement guidance really criminalise boycotts – and what about additional, pending moves by the British government to restrict how local authorities choose to invest pension funds? What is really going on behind this attack on local democracy, in the name of shielding the Israeli state, its institutions, and complicit corporations from a growing global boycott campaign? Read more

Silencing Dissent: Palestine Solidarity under Attack

Students at Palestine Technical University in the Occupied West Bank face an unusual challenge in pursuit of their studies: the Israeli military has built a training facility on campus. The university may be the only one in the world where an occupying army has not only built a firing range on campus, but also regularly shoots and detains student protesters; in one six week period recently, some 350 Palestinian students were injured by the Israeli army. Read more

LSE criticised by students for bowing to pro-Israel ‘lobby groups’

The London School of Economics (LSE) has been accused of bowing to external “lobby groups”, following the university’s public criticism of the student Palestine Society.

The controversy centres around an exhibition held by the Palestine Society in the SU building on October 22, intended to raise awareness about Israel’s repression of Palestinians living under military occupation, particularly in light of recent unrest. Read more