BBC urged to adopt IHRA definition following backlash

January 2, 2022 by JNS
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British politicians and Jewish groups are calling on the BBC to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism, The Jewish Chronicle reported.

Close-up of BBC News icon. Credit: Olga Ganovicheva/Shutterstoc

British MKs Stephen Crabb and Robert Halfon, joined the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, the Campaign Against Antisemitism and the Jewish Leadership Council in urging the BBC to adopt the IHRA definition after the SWC ranked the broadcaster third on its “Global Anti-Semitism 2021 Top Ten” list for repeatedly reporting errors that “slanders Jews.”

The Board of Deputies of British Jews added that the BBC should train its staff in antisemitism awareness and the Jewish group’s president, Marie van der Zyl, said she would raise the issue with the BBC’s director-general Tim Davie at a meeting in 2022.

A CAA spokesman said that “for years” the watchdog group has offered to provide antisemitism training to the BBC and asked the broadcaster to adopt the IHRA definition.

Lord Pickles, the U.K.’s special envoy for post Holocaust issues, stated, “The U.K. expects the BBC to set an example in tackling antisemitism. It could do so by following other international and U.K. institutions adopting and implementing the IHRA modern definition on antisemitism. By doing so, it would strengthen and enhance the balance and impartiality of its reporting.”

A spokesman for the BBC responded by telling The Jewish Chronicle, “Anti-Semitism is abhorrent. The BBC strives to serve the Jewish community and all communities across our country fairly with accurate and impartial reporting.”


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