Counter-protest planned for anti-Israel Al Quds Day march

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Counter-protest planned for anti-Israel Al Quds Day march

Al Quds Unmasked group of Jews, Christians and Muslims plan to oppose pro-Iran rally scheduled for Friday in central London

The annual Al-Quds march held in solidarity of Palestinians returns after the pandemic.
The annual Al-Quds march held in solidarity of Palestinians returns after the pandemic.

Members of the Jewish community and their inter-faith allies are planning a counter protest to a notorious anti-Israel march planned in London this week.

The annual anti-Israel, anti-Zionism and pro-Palestinian International Al Quds Day event takes place outside the Home Office in Westminster on 4 April, the last Friday of Ramadan. Speakers include anti-Zionist Bristol University professor David Miller, retired Anglican priest Steven Sizer and former MP Chris Williamson.

In response, a group called Al Quds Unmasked calls for “residents and citizens of UK Jews, Christians and Muslims to say enough is enough! And put an end to the hate marches”.

Al Quds poster

The group says it “will NOT sit silently by as we witness the normalisation of terror! Hamas ARE terrorists, funded by Iran. We will not let London forget this fact. We reject the calls to destroy Israel and stand against normalisation of Jew hatred.”

Itai Galmudy, organiser of the counter protestors, told Jewish News: “We feel that these marches have ballooned into anti-Jewish, anti-Israel marches whose sole purpose is to remove us from the public domain. We protest to say ‘enough is enough’. We won’t be made scapegoats for their anger. We will be there every time to make sure the police help us uphold our democratic rights. Our community should not be afraid because someone is protesting. We should show everyone their real faces. That we are not afraid. That we are living in a democratic country still. We shouldn’t let them drive us off the street”.

A CST spokesperson told Jewish News: “The Quds Day rally is an annual event inspired by the government of Iran, with all the extremism and antisemitism that entails. It is a march predicated on anti-Israel hate, expressed through calls for Israel to be erased from the map, and in the past regularly featured Hizbollah flags until that terror group was banned. That gives an indication of the nature of this event and we can expect similar kinds of extremism this year.”

A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism told Jewish News: “As always, our demonstration and events monitoring team will be onsite at Friday’s march and we will take action against participants who break the law. While we will be doing our job, it remains to be seen whether the Met will do theirs”.

Al Quds, run in London for the last forty years, is supported by organisations including Black Lives Matter Coalition UK, Jewish Network for Palestine, Leeds University Palestine Solidarity Group, Muslim Public Affairs Committee UK and Scotland Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

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