Israelis and British Jews took great pleasure in visiting rainy Bradford this weekend, after George Galloway MP declared his city constituency “an Israel-free zone” last week, after criticising the IDF action in Gaza.
Holding Israeli flags and clutching their Israeli passports, families including women and children posed for photos in front of Bradford’s landmarks, as supporters took to social media to spur them on.
StandWithUs chairwoman Joy Wolfe tweeted: “Great initiative 2thumb noses at Goerge Galloway – well done.”
Rabbi Shneur Odze said: “I was anxious as to what kind of reaction we’d get, but a few shouts aside, the reception was almost exclusively positive… Almost everyone seemed to know why we were there.”
Meanwhile, the local tourist office in Bradford has received a surge of requests for brochures from Jewish people.
It comes after a speech Galloway made at a public meeting in Leeds on 2 August, in which he said: “We don’t want any Israeli goods. We don’t want any Israeli services. We don’t want any Israeli academics. We don’t even want any Israeli tourists… We reject this illegal, barbarous, savage state that calls itself Israel.”
The invective has led to 4,500 people signing a petition to the Crown Prosecution Service calling for Galloway to be arrested under S.5(1) of the Public Order Act 1986.
A spokesperson for West Yorkshire Police said they were investigating and that enquiries were ongoing.