Four arrested in London over anti-Semitic threats shouted from car


Four men were arrested in London on Sunday after anti-Semitic abuse was heard being shouted from a car on videos shared on social media.

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson condemned the acts as “shameful racism” that have “no place” in society.

Footage on social media showed a convoy of cars covered with Palestinian flags passing down Finchley Road, in north London, with passengers heard to shout offensive language and threats against Jews.

Scotland Yard said four men were arrested after a car was stopped at around 6.30 pm on Sunday.

“Four men were arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences. They were taken into custody at a west London police station where they remain,” police said in a statement.

Superintendent Jo Edwards, in charge of investigation into the video, said: “This behaviour was utterly shocking and will not be tolerated.”

The incident comes after thousands of people marched through London on Saturday to the gates of the Israeli embassy, while protests took place in other cities across the UK and Ireland in solidarity with Palestinians.

Thousands of Palestinians have been forced to flee their homes after a week of sustained conflict.

Since Monday night, Palestinian militant group Hamas has fired hundreds of rockets into Israel, whose military responded by barraging the Gaza Strip with tank fire and air strikes.

The incident in London received cross-party criticism from British politicians.

Johnson said: “There is no place for anti-Semitism in our society.

“Ahead of Shavuot, I stand with Britain’s Jews who should not have to endure the type of shameful racism we have seen today.

Labour leader Keir Starmer described the incident as “utterly disgusting.”

“Anti-Semitism, misogyny and hate have no place on our streets or in our society,” he said. “here must be consequences.”

Mike Freer, MP for Finchley and Golders Green, said: “The scenes I’ve witnessed in my constituency today have left me sick to my stomach.

“The blatant and open anti-Semitism on display today, deliberately targeting areas with large Jewish populations is nothing short of incitement and I have urgently raised the matter with the Home Secretary, Commissioner and Mayor.”

Home Secretary Priti Patel also described the scenes as “disgusting anti-Semitism.”

“There is no place for this hatred in the UK,” she tweeted. “I expect @metpoliceuk to be taking this seriously.”

Referring to the video of the convoy, Housing and Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said: “This, on the streets of London, is deeply disturbing.

“Vile, criminal hatred like this must not be tolerated.”

In a statement Jenrick continued: “Whatever your view of the conflict in Israel and Gaza, there is no justification for inciting anti-Jewish or anti-Muslim hatred.

“The incidents of anti-Semitism we have seen in recent days have been shameful.

“Some of the language used on marches this weekend and in posts on social media is intimidating, criminal and racist.

“We must not tolerate this vile, shameful hate in our country. These actions must stop.

Cabinet Minister Michael Gove described another video appearing to show protesters shouting anti-Semitic abuse as “deeply concerning.”

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