London: Police threaten to arrest Jewish man for walking near pro-Palestinian protest

The man in question is the executive director of the Campaign Against Antisemitism, who said that the event shows that the Jewish community is not safe when there are demonstrations against Israel.

The Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) reported that its executive director, Gideon Falter, was threatened with arrest for being openly Jewish while passing near a pro-Palestine demonstration. The organization published a video in which police are seen telling Falter that he should leave the are because he was "breaching the peace."

"You are quite openly Jewish. This is a pro-Palestinian march. I am not accusing you of anything, but I am worried about the reaction to your presence," a London Police officer is heard saying to Falter.

In the video of last Saturday's march shared on social media, the officer responds, "In that case sir, when the crowd is gone. I will happily escort you out."

There's a unit of people here now. You will be escorted out of this area so you can go about your business, go where you want freely or if you choose to remain here because you are causing a breach of peace, with all these other people, you will be arrested. ...Your presence here is antagonizing a large group of people that we can't deal with all of them if they attack you... because your presence is antagonizing them.

In that sense, Falter published a statement in which he maintained that although authorities and politicians have insisted that when anti-Israel protests sweep through London, it is perfectly safe for Jews. This despite "the antisemitic placards, the genocidal slogans, the glorification of Hamas, the Islamist flags, the swastikas." However, Falter maintains, it is not true that Jews are safe.

"I know because on Saturday I did what I normally do. I went to synagogue, and then afterwards I met up with some people to just go on a walkabout around London. Just over six months ago there would have been nothing controversial about Jews walking around London on a Saturday. And the only thing that even marked us out as being Jewish was that I was wearing a kippah on my head, and I was carrying a small burgundy bag with stars of David on, which I put my prayer shawl into after synagogue," Falter said.

He maintained that despite the situation he experienced, the incident is not the responsibility of police officers:

I spoke to or was spoken to by various different police officers but I want to be very very clear this is not about the individual frontline officers that I spoke to on Saturday I might disagree with some of their decisions but these people these officers are being put in impossible positions week in week out they're being asked to police huge protests with very few officers where there's all sorts of criminality on display from racism to glorification of terrorism and even violence some of that violence directed against the officers themselves.