An anti Israel message is projected on the Houses of Parliament during a demonstration
An anti Israel message is projected on the Houses of Parliament during a demonstrationAnadolu via Reuters Connect

Pro-Palestinian activists targeted British MPs and councilors with intimidatory tactics at least 38 times between January 1st and March 15th, The Telegraph reported on Saturday, citing a dossier compiled by a counter-extremism analyst.

The analysis revealed what it called a “litany of menace” since the start of the year, involving elected representatives experiencing verbal abuse, intimidation, and disruptive protests related to the Israel-Hamas war.

According to the report, while politicians from both main political parties have been targeted, the data shows that Labour has endured the brunt of the protests.

The report found that several incidents involved the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) or local affiliates.

John Zak Woodcock, Baron Walney, the Government’s independent adviser on political violence and disruption, responded to the dossier: “This litany of menace highlights a clear pattern of intimidation of elected representatives by pro-Palestine activists.

“Storming council chambers and haranguing MPs has nothing to do with changing people’s minds. It’s about trying to bully and threaten them into submission.

“If this was protesters with the St George’s flag hijacking council meetings for a Right-wing cause that had nothing to do with local government, everyone would rightly demand action. So it’s time for all mainstream parties to stand up for their people against this thuggery and work to cut funding and support for organizations like the PSC who facilitate it.”

A Home Office spokesman commented on the report: “It is totally unacceptable that a tiny minority seek to intimidate democratically elected representatives and impose their views.

“Protests should never take place at an elected representative’s home address or seek to intimidate people at democratic venues and prevent people from entering. This is exactly why we brought in tough new powers and record funding to ensure the police can act swiftly to prevent disruption and protect our democracy.”

Last month, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak remarked that “there is a growing consensus that mob rule is replacing democratic rule. And we’ve got to collectively, all of us, change that urgently,” and added: “We simply cannot allow this pattern of increasingly violent and intimidatory behavior which is, as far as anyone can see, intended to shout down free debate and stop elected representatives doing their job. That is simply undemocratic.”

The Prime Minister's comments came as the Home Office announced 31 million pounds in funding to increase security for MPs and other politicians.

The Telegraph reported that on Friday, Chi Onwurah (Labour, Newcastle upon Tyne Central), the shadow science minister, required police presence at a meeting with constituents.

Responding on social media to a protester who accused her of being a “coward” for getting a police escort out of the meeting, Onwurah wrote: “The police came because your protest was becoming aggressive, banging on the library walls and hurling abuse, then running around the building, attacking my staff member’s car and jumping in front of traffic.”

In another incident reported by the newspaper, Labour Chairman Sir Keir Starmer and David Lammy, the Shadow Foreign Secretary, were forced to abandon an event in Tottenham, northern London, after protesters picketed the venue.

One placard photographed at the event read: “Lammy supports racist killings” while another said: “Genocidal Starmer Not Welcome In Tottenham”.