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Anti-Israel Activists 'Turned Out' of Hendon UK

Local residents swelled the ranks of Israel activists in Hendon during a counter-rally supporting FM Avigdor Lieberman and Israel
By Gabe Kahn
First Publish: 5/23/2012, 7:29 PM

World's Largest Israeli Flag
World's Largest Israeli Flag
S. Cohen/Arutz 7

Hundreds of pro-Israel activists and local residents rallied behind Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman as he addressed the Jewish National Fund in Hendon, UK.

The counter-protest by British Israel Coalition began as Israel activists challenged anti-Israel and Islamist groups protesting Lieberman's presence.

However, as news of the anti-Israel demonstration spread, local residents turned out to join with the British Israel Coalition, swelling their ranks and amplifying their voice.

Hasan Afzal, spokesperson for British Muslims for Israel, which took part in the counter-demonstration, noted, "At first there were fifty of them and fifty of us, but a few hours later, our numbers had swelled to 200 proud supporters of Israel, including Christians and Muslims."

"The anti-Israel crowd was actually turned out of Hendon," Afzal said. "We showed that our presence was all that was needed to turn the tables on those who attack us and our community.

"I protested in support of the two-state solution and peace; the anti-Israel crowd represented destruction and violence. The local residents who joined us struck a powerful blow against those who intimidate Jews and supporters of Israel," he added.

Ari Soffer, Director of the British Israel Coalition, and organizer of the rally, stated, "British Jewry no longer has to suffer under pusillanimous leadership in the face of vicious anti-Israel sentiment."

"Now, Jews, Christians and Muslims are standing up against the bigots and bullies who make up the anti-Israel network. As word spread of our counter-demonstration, local residents turned out in support until we outnumbered the anti-Israel groups three-to-one.

"We turned back the anti-Zionists. This is anti-fascism work at its finest," he said, adding, "The British Israel Coalition stands where others back down. We support the Israeli State with passion and work to defend its democratic values with pride."