UK Home Secretary Priti Patel
UK Home Secretary Priti PatelReuters

In a Monday talk British Home Secretary Priti Patel spoke of her “unflinching and unequivocal” support for Israel, slamming BDS as “racist.”

Patel, speaking at a Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) reception, called her relationship with Israel “deeply personal,” the Jewish Chronicle reported.

Describing last year’s listing of Hamas by the UK as a terror entity, Patel said she was “quite unapologetic,” adding the move was “not just the right thing to do, [it was] a moral imperative.”

Patel also discussed the values that are shared between Israel and the UK to the audience of 140 CFI supporters, which included 50 lawmakers. She described both countries having an “unwavering belief in freedom, democracy and security.”

On the topic of Israel boycotts, she said: “Everything we have seen around the BDS movement is racist.”

But she noted her worry that antisemitism has “infiltrated our politics, our political dialogue and discourse.”

“It is utterly appalling that antisemitism has been on the increase,” Patel said. “We can never tolerate extremism… it absolutely erodes the fundamental rock of security and with that peace and prosperity.”

Commenting on recent terror attacks in Israel, Patel said that the British government “will continue to send out the strongest messages around zero tolerance towards terrorist activities, but also towards the type of activities that are aimed and targeted at hurting the State of Israel, Jewish communities and the people of Israel.”