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Labour party must listen to the Jewish community on defining anti-Semitism

68 British rabbis call for Labour to adopt the full, unamended IHRA definition of antisemitism including its examples, in a letter to The Guardian.

As British rabbis, it is with great regret that we find it necessary to write, yet antisemitism within sections of the Labour party has become so severe and widespread that we must speak out with one Jewish voice.

The Labour party’s leadership has chosen to ignore those who understand antisemitism the best, the Jewish community. By claiming to know what’s good for our community, the Labour party’s leadership have chosen to act in the most insulting and arrogant way.

It is not the Labour party’s place to rewrite a definition of antisemitism accepted by the Crown Prosecution Service, College of Policing, the Scottish parliament, the Welsh assembly, the National Union of Students, and 124 local authorities, including scores of Labour-held councils, including Haringey and Greater Manchester – but above all else, accepted by the vast majority of Jewish people in Britain and globally.

On behalf of our communities, members and congregants, we urge the Labour party to listen to the Jewish community, adopt the full and unamended International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism including its examples, and like the organisations listed above, use the IHRA definition alone as their working definition of antisemitism.

Rabbi Dr Harvey Belovski Senior rabbi, Golders Green Synagogue, and vice-chair, Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue
Rabbi Joseph Dweck Senior rabbi, Spanish and Portuguese Sephardi Community of the UK
Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner Senior rabbi to Reform Judaism
Rabbi Nicky Liss Highgate Synagogue, and chair, Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue
Rabbi Avrohom Pinter Principal of the Yesodey Hatorah schools
Rabbi Danny Rich Senior rabbi and chief executive of Liberal Judaism
Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg Senior Rabbi to Masorti Judaism
Dayan Ivan Binstock Dayan (judge) of the London Beth Din, and senior rabbi, St John’s Wood Synagogue
Rabbi Stuart Altshuler Belsize Square Synagogue
Rabbi Larry Becker Sukkat Shalom Reform Synagogue
Rabbi Yoni Birnbaum Hadley Wood Jewish Community, and executive, Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue
Rabbi Yehuda Black Kenton United Synagogue
Rabbi Janet Burden Ealing Liberal Synagogue
Rabbi Baruch Davis Chigwell and Hainault Synagogue and past chair, Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue
Rabbi Hadassah Davis Member of the Liberal Rabbinic Conference
Rabbi Colin Eimer Emeritus rabbi, Sha’arei Tsedek North London Reform Synagogue
Rabbi Daniel Epstein Cockfosters & North Southgate Synagogue
Rabbi Elchonon Feldman Senior rabbi, Bushey and District United Synagogue
Rabbi Yisroel Fine St Johns Wood Synagogue
Rabbi Paul Freedman Senior rabbi, Radlett Reform Synagogue
Rabbi Dr Moshe Freedman New West End Synagogue
Rabbi Ariel J Friedlander
Rabbi Yoni Golker Assistant rabbi, St John’s Wood Synagogue
Rabbi Michael Harris Hampstead Synagogue
Rabbi Simon Harris Wembley Synagogue
Rabbi Frank Hellner Emeritus rabbi, Finchley Progressive Synagogue
Rabbi Jonny Hughes Radlett United Synagogue
Rabbi Geoffrey Hyman Rabbi, Ilford United Synagogue
Rabbi Dr Margaret Jacobi Birmingham Progressive Synagogue
Rabbi Richard Jacobi East London and Essex Liberal Synagogue
Cantor Zöe Jacobs Finchley Reform Synagogue
Rabbi Oliver Spike Joseph Elstree & Borehamwood Masorti Community
Rabbi Chaim Kanterovitz Senior Rabbi Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue & Chair Vaad Harabonim Mizrachi UK
Rabbi Dov Kaplan Hampstead Garden Suburb Synagogue
Rabbi Michael Laitner Senior rabbi of United Synagogue Jewish Living, and assistant rabbi, Finchley Synagogue
Rabbi Jeremy Lawrence Senior rabbi, Finchley United Synagogue
Rabbi Barry Lerer Barnet Synagogue
Rabbi Judith Levitt
Rabbi Mendel Lew Stanmore & Canons Park Synagogue
Rabbi Shlomo Odze Associate rabbi, South Hampstead United Synagogue and vice-chair, Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue
Rabbi Alan Mann Rabbi Rodney Mariner Former rabbi, Belsize Square Synagogue
Rabbi David Mason Rabbi at Muswell Hill Synagogue and executive member, Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue
Rabbi David Mitchell West London Synagogue
Rabbi Lea Mühlstein Northwood and Pinner Liberal Synagogue
Rabbi Rene Pfertzel Kingston Liberal Synagogue
Rabbi Hershel Rader Brighton and Hove Hebrew Congregation
Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain Maidenhead Synagogue
Rabbi Michael Rosenfeld-Schueler Jewish chaplain, University of Oxford and Oxford Brookes
Rabbi Sylvia Rothschild Past chair of the Rabbinic Assembly of Reform Judaism
Rabbi Elli Tikvah Sarah Brighton and Hove Progressive Synagogue
Rabbi Dr J Shindler Executive director, Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue
Rabbi Yitzchak Schochet Mill Hill Synagogue
Rabbi Irit Shillor Harlow Jewish Community
Rabbi Yitzchok Sufrin Enfield & Winchmore Hill United Synagogue
Rabbi Lee M Sunderland Romford & District Synagogue
Rabbi Dr Jackie Tabick Convener of the Beit Din, the Movement for Reform Judaism
Rabbi Roni Tabick New Stoke Newington Synagogue
Rabbi Sam Taylor Community rabbi, Western Marble Arch Synagogue
Rabbi Pete Tobias The Liberal Synagogue Elstree
Rabbi Alexander Tsykin Jewish chaplain, Bristol and Western Region
Rabbi Dr Martin van den Bergh Childwall Hebrew Congregation
Dayan Elimelech Vanzetta Rabbi, Ahavas Yisrael
Rabbi Charles Wallach Bournemouth Reform Synagogue
Rabbi Chaim Weiner Director of Masorti Europe and European Masorti Bet Din
Rabbi Roderick Young Former principal rabbi, Finchley Reform Synagogue
Rabbi Dr Andrea Zanardo Brighton and Hove Reform Synagogue

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