Kamel Hawwash of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and 22 other signatories say that a council’s refusal to host a charity event has vindicated concerns raised about the IHRA working definition of antisemitism
Tower Hamlets council in London last month prevented a bike ride raising awareness of the plight of the Palestinian people from using space in one of its parks. We now know that the council feared that this advocacy for Palestine would violate the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of antisemitism (UK council refused to host Palestinian event over antisemitism fears, 3 August). This use of the IHRA definition demonstrates the real threat to freedom of expression that it represents, ignoring its protection in our national rights legislation.
Palestinian groups, eminent lawyers, academic experts on antisemitism, prominent British Jews and bodies such as the Institute for Race Relations previously raised these concerns publicly. The rights of all British citizens to accurately describe, inform and convey the reality of ongoing Palestinian dispossession, and to call for action to resist these illegalities, belongs in the public space. All public bodies have an obligation to protect and defend these rights, to maintain democracy.
Link : Freedom of expression on Palestine is being suppressed | Letter