After British parliament member George Galloway declared that Israeli tourists were not welcome in Bradford, declaring it "an Israel-free zone", Israel sent its ambassador to the UK to the area, where he met many supporters of all faiths.
Meanwhile, Galloway reacted with anger to the visit, calling it a "provocation" by the representative of a "rogue and terrorists state."
Ambassador Daniel Taub met together with Jews and local Israel supporters at a local synagogue, said he was pleased to learn that the real voice of Bradford was "one of cooperation and understanding."
(Photo: Yiftah Curiel)
Taub slammed Galloway's declaration, saying "it's not an Israel-free zone you are talking about George. It's a tolerance-free zone."
"I am here because I was invited to come by the people of Bradford, who sent a clear message that George Galloway does not represent them. I don't believe George Galloway is the real voice of Bradford, there is a long history of co-operation between Bradford and Israel," Taub told the local Bradford Telegraph and Argus.
(Photo: Yiftah Curiel)
Responding to the visit, the fire-brand MP said it was “a provocation to the 10s of 1,000s of people in Bradford who regard the Israeli ambassador as the plenipotentiary of a rogue and terrorist state,” Galloway told BuzzFeed.
“As has just been proved, I cannot make Bradford an Israel-free zone, but I am certain that the Israeli ambassador was not welcome.”
George Galloway (Photo: AP).
It seems the anti-Israel sentiment is not confined solely to West Bradford, and in wake of Israel Gaza operation, East Bradford MP David Ward also voiced his opinion, saying in a Tweet that if he "were in Gaza would I fire a rocket? Probably yes."
Taub also slammed his comments, saying they were an "insult to Palestinians who stand up against terrorists and raise their kids to reject violence."
West Yorkshire Police confirmed they were still investigating complaints about comments made by Galloway at a meeting of his far-left Respect party in Leeds earlier this month, local media reported.
In wake of Galloway's comments, which are not the first time the MP has found himself in trouble over Israel, groups of Israelis and British Jews arrived in the city
just to spite the controversial MP.
|Visitors at "Israel-free zone"|
Last Sunday, former Ukip candidate Rabbi Shneur Odze from Manchester organized a pilgrimage to the area, in order to "prove a point," he said. "We wanted to show that you can't make a city an 'Israel-free zone,' he added.
"Got my Israeli flag, passport and tee shirt, Bradford here we come! Sorry George Galloway ;-)", Odze wrote in a tweet.
The visitors uploaded videos to social networks documenting their "infiltration into enemy territory", in which they performed tasks such as ordering coffee at Starbucks while displaying a passport, and distributing Israeli products, such as Israel's best loved snack Bamba, to passersby.
Several visitors posed for pictures with the Israeli flag against the background of different sites in the city. The sightseers then uploaded the photos to Twitter, adding the hashtag #galloway, to ensure that he would catch sight of the protest.
"#GeorgeGalloway must be spitting nails...." one tweet said, and another wondered: "How's your boycott going?"