THE representative body of the British Jewish community came under fire yesterday from hundreds of British Jews who demanded to know why the organisation had refused to condemn Israel’s continued construction of illegal settlements.
More than 400 Jewish people signed an open letter to the the British Board of Deputies, declaring that the unlawful settlement-building was “not in their name.”
Writing in the Jewish Chronicle newspaper, they demanded to know why the board opposed UN resolution 2334, condemning Israel settlements.
The statement said: “When leaders of the Board of Deputies declared their opposition to resolution 2334, they did not speak in our name.”
This year’s anniversary of 50 years of occupation represents “a tragic failure,” the statement adds.
Jews for Justice for Palestinians spokeswoman Naomi Wayne said: “The Board of Deputies reaction flies in the face of what British Jews want: an end to the settlements that can do nothing for the peace they keeping hoping for.”
The statement is sponsored by three leading Jewish organisations, together representing over 2,500 people: Jews for Justice for Palestinians, the Jewish Socialist Group and Independent Jewish Voices.
Resolution 2334 was adopted without dissent on December 23 last year by 14 of the 15 members of the security council, including Britain.
This followed president Barack Obama’s decision, just before his term of office ended, not to use the US veto but to abstain in the vote.
The statement reads: “We are Jews in Britain who support UN security council resolution 2334. This confirms that the establishment of settlements ‘has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law.’
“The resolution demands that Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory.”
The intervention coincided with confirmation that British Prime Minister Theresa May will meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in London next week.
It also comes mere days after Israel announced that it would establish an entirely new settlement in the occupied West Bank, the first since the late 1990s.
We need your support to keep running. If you like what you read please donate by clicking here