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Jewish leaders slam comments made by JNF chief over Muslim immigration 

Amar'e Stoudemire Hosts "Stoudemire Wines" Launch Reception With Jewish National Fund
Jewish National Fund logo on February 20, 2018 in New York City. [Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for Stoudemire Wines]

UK Jewish community leaders expressed outrage after the UK chair of the Jewish National Fund (JNF UK) claimed Muslim immigration would leave 'no future' for British Jews, Jewish News reported.

Samuel Hayek, who is an Israeli citizen living in the UK told Jewish News that he predicted a bleak future for British Jews, and claimed that in ten years time the community would no longer be able to live in the UK.

He said: "The process is that maybe in 10 years, maybe less, who knows, Jews will not be able to live in the UK. I don't think anybody can stop it."

He continued: "The evidence is the number of immigrants to England. The demographic of British society is changing. Historical events sometimes take long to identify. It is clear England is changing."

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"If you look at France, with numbers, nobody would have believed 20 years ago the state of the Jewish community as it is today."

When pressed as to whether or not he meant Muslim immigration, Hayek said that the journalist was 'not wrong' in their assumption.

These Islamophobic comments left Jewish community leaders uncomfortable, who were quick to condemn the anti-Muslim rhetoric espoused by Hayek.

Board of Deputies President Marie van der Zyl said: "We condemn adverse remarks about Muslim immigration and Muslim communities."

"This year, thousands of people from our community contributed to collections to help Afghan refugees who had fled to this country. We believe that this is far more indicative of the attitude of British Jews."

Jewish Leadership Council outgoing chair Jonathan Goldstein said the comments made by Hayek were "simplistic and reckless."

Hayek also said that Muslim immigrants "don't speak English, they create their own ghettos, their own education, their own process of thinking", and after being challenged that these were slurs dished out to Jewish immigrants, Hayek claimed that it was different for Jewish people, that it "is not the same when you have immigration that is motivated and guided by the rules of Islam."

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Hayek denied he was attempting to frighten British Jews into moving to Israel: "I want to encourage those who want to continue to live in England – why should I want to frighten them to leave?"

This came after he said similar things in an interview with the Jerusalem Post earlier this month, saying that it was time for British Jews to plan to leave the country.

The Jerusalem Post article cited 'shifting demographics', particularly 'Muslim immigrants' who are 'anti-Jewish' and 'anti-Israel', and claimed these communities had influence over the government.

The article quoted a Telegraph report in 2017 claiming the Muslim population will be 13 million by 2050.

After the 1967 Six-Day War, the then Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol gave the JNF written instructions to start grabbing Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank. Today, the JNF, which was established in 1901 to buy and develop lands in historic Palestine to house illegal Jewish settlers, owns 13 per cent of the land in Israel exclusively for use by Jews.

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