British Home Secretary Priti Patel said at the CFI Independence Day event that everything around the BDS movement is racist and antisemitic and called for preventive legislation.
The Conservative Friends of Israel Independence Day event was held on May 16, and included an audience of 50 parliamentarians and Israel Ambassador to Great Britain Tzipi Hotovely, reports The Jerusalem Post.
British Home Secretary Priti Patel spoke at the event, claiming that the BDS movement is fundamentally racist and antisemitic.
“Holding the Jewish community collectively responsible for what happens in the Middle East by my definition is racist,” Patel said.
Patel’s Conservative Party intends to present legislation that would prevent British public bodies from engaging in boycott activities such as BDS.
“Everything we have seen around the BDS movement is racist,” she said. “The antisemitic tropes, the cartoons, the chants [and] the flag-waving.”
Patel added that in her childhood, antisemitism was not a feature of daily British life, but things have changed. “In my 12 years in parliament, it is utterly appalling that antisemitism has been on the increase. It has infiltrated our politics, our political dialogue and discourse. That is completely unacceptable. Antisemitism is racism in my book, it really is. That is why we are united in standing up and speaking out against antisemitism.”
During the gathering, Patel recalled the UK’s decision to stand against terrorism and outlaw both the so-called military and political wings of Hamas.
Israel and Great Britain “have a prosperous future together… for centuries to come,” Patel said, one that will include security, trade and most importantly, the “bond of friendship.”
Photo credit: Simon Dawson / No 10