Campaigners against antisemitism have won the right for a judicial review into whether the organiser of the Al Quds Day march can be prosecuted for making anti-Israel comments.
Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) initiated a private prosecution against Nazim Ali of the Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) last year, after he demanded that Israel “be wiped off the map” and that Zionists were to blame for the Grenfell disaster.
But days before Ali was due to face magistrates in Westminster, the Crown Prosecution Service used its statutory powers to stop the prosecution.
Now a judge has granted permission to judicially review that decision, which CAA called “irrational”.
The Al-Quds Day march is an annual anti-Israel event through central London in which some protesters wave Hezbollah flags.
The CAA said it recorded the event and accused Ali of telling crowds that “Zionists” were in part responsible for the Grenfell Tower tragedy.
Those comments were later described as “grotesque” by the Community Security Trust.
Ali, who was not arrested, has said he has faced death threats from Israel’s supporters in the UK, and that he is considering suing Jewish newspapers for describing him as a hate preacher.
Reacting to news that its judicial review will proceed, CAA chairman Gideon Falter said: “This is a case that the CPS should have prosecuted itself. Our emphatic legal advice is that their decision to prevent us from doing so was irrational.”
He added: “We are encouraged that the court has agreed that our case should proceed to the second stage of this two-stage judicial review process. We hope to succeed and resume our private prosecution of Nazim Ali.”