Hosts of controversial fringe event won’t feature at Labour conference
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Hosts of controversial fringe event won’t feature at Labour conference

Free Speech on Israel not listed on the bill for the party's September gathering, after remarks made last year about the Holocaust lead to complaints

Anti-Israel fringe event at Labour's annual conference, held by group 'Free speech on Israel' Picture credit: @WikiGuido
Anti-Israel fringe event at Labour's annual conference, held by group 'Free speech on Israel' Picture credit: @WikiGuido

An anti-Israel group will not be on the bill at Labour’s conference, after a speaker at its event last year asked whether people should be allowed to question if the Holocaust happened.

Free Speech on Israel (FSOI) does not appear on this year’s programme of fringe events for annual gathering in Liverpool next month.

At last year’s FSOI event, keynote speaker Miko Peled, a Jerusalem-born anti-Zionist who lives in America refused to call Israel “Israel”, but rather “Palestine”, and concluded his remarks by saying “We can speak about the Holocaust, yes or no?”

He also repeatedly called Israel an “apartheid” state,saying it was “a racist and colonialist project” whose edifice, he had seen on recent visits, was “crumbling”.

There was also anger at Michael Kalmanovitz of the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, who called for the Jewish Labour Movement and the Labour Friends of Israel to be expelled.

“What are JLM and LFI doing in our Party?” he asked. “It’s time we campaigned to kick them out”. A member of the audience complained bitterly that JLM had received an award on Sunday for “best practice”.

The Jewish Labour Movement spoke to the Conference Arrangements Committee at the time about the comments made during the fringe event.

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