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IHRC WELCOMES LORD LEVY MOVE

24 November 2000

ZIONIST MIDDLE EAST ENVOY REMOVED, BUT STILL LONG WAY TO GO FOR BRITAIN’S MIDDLE EAST POLICY


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Islamic Human Rights Commission
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PRESS RELEASE
For Immediate Release 24.11.00

IHRC WELCOMES LORD LEVY MOVE
ZIONIST MIDDLE EAST ENVOY REMOVED, BUT STILL LONG WAY TO GO FOR BRITAIN’S MIDDLE EAST POLICY

The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) welcomes the British Government’s removal of Lord Michael Levy from his role as the British Prime Minister’s special envoy to the Middle East. IHRC has been calling for the removal of Lord Levy from this position for some time.

Lord Levy was finally removed from his post last week. Peter Hain MP, the Foreign Office Minister, admitted to IHRC in a letter dated 17 November that the Foreign Office had “since 4 October, received over a thousand copies of a letter to the Foreign Secretary”, modelled on an IHRC draft. According to IHRC’s own estimates, the number of letters received by the Foreign Office is far higher. The letter demanded, among other things, that Levy be dismissed from his Middle East post.

Officially, Lord Levy is plugging gaps in ministerial schedules in Latin America. According to the London Times (16 November), however, Levy was sidelined. Foreign Office members said that he was a liability in Arab countries and were glad to see him leave. The Sunday Times (26 June) similarly argued that Levy was privately annoying to Foreign Secretary Robin Cook.

The demand of IHRC and its campaigners was based on the fact that Lord Levy is an unashamed Zionist who is accordingly a staunch supporter of Israel. He was former member of the board of the Jewish Agency, a body which established the alternative Zionist government in Palestine via the British mandate, which later became the State of Israel. The Jewish Chronicle reports that Levy is also a former Chair of the Jewish Israel Appeal, now the United Jewish Israel Appeal, an organisation which raises large amounts of money (10 million pounds so far this year), much of which is channelled to Israel.

Lord Michael Levy was introduced to Tony Blair at a dinner party in 1994 by an Israeli diplomat. Levy’s son is also an Israeli citizen who works as an adviser to the Zionist government minister, Yossi Beilin (Sunday Times, 26 June). It is therefore amazing to see that Prime Minister Tony Blair appointed him as the special envoy to the Middle East given his deep-rooted Zionist connections. With Lord Levy on the scene, there was little chance that Britain might play a more sympathetic role to the Palestinian victims of Zionist aggression.

IHRC cautions that although Levy’s removal is undoubtedly a positive development in the government’s position on the Middle East crisis, and a positive achievement by campaigners, there is still a long way to go. Britain’s Middle East policy - backed by unfair reporting by the pro -Israel media - remains deeply flawed, being effectively supportive of Israel and biased against the indigenous Palestinians. For example, the government has approved over 150 applications for licenced arms exports to Israel so far this year, providing confirmation that the Zionist regime may be using British arms to massacre Palestinians. Arms included rifles, mortars, bombs, ammunition, combatant vessels and aircraft. This will continue as long as Muslims remain under-represented and misrepresented by the government and media, as they are today.

For more information on the above, please contact the IHRC Press Office on (+44) 20 8902 0888, (+44) 958 522 196, e-mail: ihrc@dial.pipex.com.[END]





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