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Three-dozen far-left pro-BDS Jewish groups urge rejection of anti-Semitism definition

The statement, spearheaded by the anti-Israel group Jewish Voice for Peace, said the IHRA definition “is worded in such a way as to be easily adopted or considered by western governments to intentionally equate legitimate criticisms of Israel and advocacy for Palestinian rights with antisemitism, as a means to suppress the former.”

Jewish Voice for Peace. Photo courtesy of NGO Monitor.
Jewish Voice for Peace. Photo courtesy of NGO Monitor.

Three-dozen far-left pro-BDS Jewish groups from around the world have signed a statement rejecting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA)’s definition of anti-Semitism over its alleged conflation of anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel.

The statement, spearheaded by the anti-Israel U.S.-based group Jewish Voice for Peace, said that the IHRA definition, which has been adopted by a number of Western countries, “is worded in such a way as to be easily adopted or considered by western governments to intentionally equate legitimate criticisms of Israel and advocacy for Palestinian rights with antisemitism, as a means to suppress the former.”

The statement said the conflation “undermines both the Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice and equality and the global struggle against antisemitism.”

“It also serves to shield Israel from being held accountable to universal standards of human rights and international law,” the statement said. “Israel does not represent us and cannot speak for us when committing crimes against Palestinians and denying their UN-stipulated rights.”

Among the other U.S.-based groups that signed the letter are Jews for Palestinian Right of Return, Jews of Color & Sephardi/Mizrahi Jews and Jews Say No!

The statement by the far-left Jewish groups comes amid an intense debate within the United Kingdom’s Labour Party over the adoption of the IHRA definition.

The Labour Party, which has been dogged by allegations of anti-Semitism in recent years centered around party leader Jeremy Corbyn, adopted an amended version of the IHRA definition that left out some formal examples of anti-Semitism largely dealing with Israel.

The move to adopt the amended version came despite an outcry of opposition from dozens of Jewish leaders, British Jewish organizations and even Labour Party politicians.

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