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Since October, we have organised an unprecedented series of demonstrations giving voice to the overwhelming majority in Britain who wish to see an end to the genocide that Israel has unleashed upon the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip. Pro-Israel groups have repeatedly made false claims in an attempt to demonise these protests and shield Israel from any democratic criticism and accountability.

This weekend, video has emerged of a police officer telling the head of the Campaign against Antisemitism( CAA) that his presence would not be welcomed by demonstrators because he was visibly Jewish. As is evident to everyone who has attended our demonstrations, this could not be further from the truth. The reality, as we have made clear on numerous occasions, is that every single one of the marches calling for a ceasefire has been attended by a very large number of Jewish people, many marching in an organised and highly visible Jewish bloc. On each occasion, Jewish speakers have been warmly received from the platform.

It is important to  correct the thoroughly dishonest representation of the circumstances surrounding this incident that has been reported in recent days.

Mr Falter is a prominent pro-Israel activist and leading member of the misnamed ‘Campaign Against Antisemitism’ (CAA), an organisation with an appalling track record of anti-Palestinian racism and Islamophobia. From its foundation, CAA has sought to conflate criticism of the state of Israel with antisemitism, something for which it was criticised by the 2015 All-Party Parliamentary Inquiry Into Antisemitism. Such conflation seeks to silence Palestinian voices by associating their call for justice and liberation with antisemitism, and to suggest that all Jewish people support Israel’s crimes. Both claims fuel rather than challenge racism and should be utterly rejected.

CAA has also been widely accused of racism for its use of anti-Palestinian racist tropes and Islamophobic narratives including smears against the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. Since October, it has consistently sought to pressure the police and the government to ban demonstrations against Israel’s genocide, even calling for the army to be deployed to stop marches.

Contrary to his claims, Mr Falter was not taking a stroll in London last Saturday when he came across the march, by chance. He came with a camera crew in the hope of provoking a reaction form the police or from protestors. If his presence was provocative, it was not because he is Jewish – something he has in common with many of the marchers – but rather because he deliberately sought to disrupt the demonstration. He is politically opposed to the marches because he supports Israel’s genocidal violence and racist system of apartheid, not because of his identity.

The dishonest antics of groups like CAA must not be allowed to undermine democracy including the right to protest. Opinion polls now make clear that 70% of the British Public support the call for an immediate ceasefire, and by a margin of 3 to 1 support the call for an end to of arms sales to Israel. We call upon all people of conscience who believe in the upholding of international law and oppose all forms of racism to join us in London when we march again on Saturday.

Palestine Solidarity Campaign

Palestinian Forum in Britain

Friends of Al-Aqsa

Stop the War Coalition

Muslim Association of Britain

Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament