Conservative election 2024 manifesto includes pledge to bring back anti-BDS Bill

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Conservative election 2024 manifesto includes pledge to bring back anti-BDS Bill

Party also promises to 'recognise a Palestinian state at a time that is most conducive to the peace process'

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Rishi Sunak announces Tory manifesto for 2024 election
Rishi Sunak announces Tory manifesto for 2024 election

The Conservative general election 2024 manifesto includes a pledge to bring back a Bill aiming to ban public bodies from imposing boycott or divestment campaigns against Israel.

The 77-page document, unveiled by Rishi Sunak at Sliverstone race track on Tuesday, also said the Tories stood “staunchly behind Israel’ right to defend itself and to live with security”.

It said that if elected into government again, the Tories would “push for a two-state solution in the Middle East, adding that “our long-standing position has been that we will recognise a Palestinian state at a time that is most conducive to the peace process”.

It also includes a claim the Tories, if elected, would “strengthen police powers to prevent protests or marches that pose a risk of serious disorder.”

Deputy prime minister Oliver Dowden had hinted at the decision to bring back the controversial anti-BDS bill in an interview he gave to Jewish News last Friday.

The Tories have pledged to pass legislation banning local councils from engaging in Israel boycotts since the 2019 election.

But in the last session of parliament the Bill will held up in the committee stages after Labour, Tory and Liberal Democrat peers tabled 79 amendments, meaning it failed to pass before Sunak called an election for 4 July.

But in the 2024 election manifesto it states: “We will bring back our Bill to ban public bodies from imposing their own boycott or divestment campaigns against foreign countries and territories.”

The bill has long been supported by the Jewish Leadership Council and Board of Deputies. But critics argued that the previous bill was an attempt at pursuing foreign policy through the back door, and that it infringed on civil liberties, and could actually make antisemitism worse.

In relation to pro-Palestine protests and other demos the manifesto adds:”In recent months we have seen shocking increases in protests being used as a cover for extremist disruption and criminality.”

It says a “small and vocal minority” are attempting to “destroy our democratic values” and adds:”We will strengthen police powers to prevent protests or marches that pose a risk of serious disorder, by allowing police to take into account the cumulative impact of protests.”

On Monday, the Lib Dem manifesto committed the party to immediate recognition of a Palestinian state.Lib Dem manifesto pledges Palestinian state recognition ‘with immediate effect’

Labour is to publish its manifesto on Thursday.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...


Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.


There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.


In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.


Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more: