Friday, October 28, 2016

When a "vociferous friend of Israel" encounters a fierce advocate for Israelis with disabilities

We could claim the recent High Holydays season is to blame for the delay. 

But whatever the excuse, we apologize for not being quicker to republish some coverage of the recent very successful speaking tour the Malki Foundation organized in the UK with the dynamic and impressive Karine Elharrar, a member of the Israeli parliament (The Knesset) at its centre. [See "London encounters with the truly remarkable Karine Elharrar", September 4, 2016; and "London: Last chance to hear the inspiring Karine Elharrar MK", September 12, 2016].

Ms Elharrar is an outstanding Israeli advocate for the cause of people with disabilities. The nature of her public interest work fits well with the advocacy and values which we at the Malki Foundation want to encourage.

Here's the text of a report published on the website of the Conservative Friends of Israel (UK), datelined September 16, 2016, under the title "CFI Chairman Sir Eric Pickles Joins Israeli MK Karine Elharrar at Malki Foundation "In Conversation" Event in Parliament":
From Ms Elharrar's Facebook page 
This week in Parliament, CFI Chairman Sir Eric Pickles joined Israeli MK Karine Elharrar at an “In Conversation” event hosted by the Malki Foundation. Sir Eric spoke with Karine about Israel’s strong ties with the UK as well as discussing the impact of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. The MP for Brentwood and Ongar told Karine that he is “proud to be a vociferous friend of Israel”, describing the country as “a bastion of democracy in a region of instability”. He underlined that anti-Semitism is often disguised as anti-Zionism, and said that while perfectly legitimate to criticise the Jewish State, it is not legitimate to deny Israel’s right to exist. Sir Eric emphasised that this desire to single out and delegitimise Israel lies behind BDS and other boycott movements. Prior to entering the Knesset in 2013 as Israel’s first disabled female MK, Karine headed the Legal Clinic at Bar-Ilan University, specialising in the rights of Holocaust survivors, people with disabilities, and pensioners. Amongst numerous political roles she chairs the Knesset State Control Committee.The Malki Foundation is the sole non-profit organisation in Israel supporting parents in order that they may keep their profoundly disabled child at home – rather than put them in a home – by funding key paramedical therapies and provide free-loan assistive equipment. The charity operates across all ethnic and religious communities.
We expect to soon have some additional media coverage of MK Elharrar's recent Malki Foundation UK speaking tour to share with our readers.

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