|Welcome for Jo Johnson’s commitment to free speech on university campuses
Board of Deputies Vice President Marie van der Zyl has welcomed Universities Minister Jo Johnson’s stand on free speech at university campuses.
Marie said: “Over the last couple of years, Jewish students have been subjected to the most outrageous abuse and intimidation when seeking to discuss Israel, including when they are discussing the routes to peace. Notorious incidents occurred at Kings College London and University College London. Regrettably, universities often find themselves floundering, unable or unwilling to provide adequate protection for these events. This must urgently change.
“We are pleased to note that the Minister will make exceptions for where there is a risk of extremism or hatred, including antisemitism. To aid this, we would urge universities to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism which the Government adopted last year.”
||Singer’s decision to pull out of Israel concerts ‘reeks of double standards’
Board of Deputies Senior Vice President Richard Verber has reacted to the decision of the singer Lorde to pull out of concerts in Israel.
Richard said: “This is the wrong call by Lorde which reeks of severe double standards. While, during this tour, she will still play Russia, despite notorious and flagrant abuses in that country’s domestic and international human rights record, she will boycott the world’s only Jewish state, which strenuously seeks to protect human rights even while defending its citizens from a decades-long onslaught of terrorism.
“Rather than using her music to bring together Israelis and Palestinians, Lorde has caved in to the bullying of a loud lobby backed by some of the world’s worst human rights abusers. She should reflect on this and reverse her decision in due course. When she does she will receive a warm welcome and no doubt understand the situation a lot better.”