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UK pledges $17 million to protect Jewish institutions

Newly appointed Home Secretary Amber Rudd leaves 10 Downing Street on July 13, 2016
Oli Scarff (AFP)
Britain to 'put in place the strongest possible measures to ensure the safety' of Jewish communities

Britain's Home Secretary Amber Rudd on Wednesday vowed to set aside $17 million to be used for the protection of Jewish such as schools, colleges, nurseries, and synagogues in Britain.

Speaking at a UK-Israel conference in Parliament, Rudd said Britain “can only effectively challenge hatred and division by working together – not just internationally but at home – Government, police, local people and organisations."

“And sadly the Jewish community knows all too well what it’s like to live with the threat from terrorism and hate crime," she added.

Last year, the Britain's Community Security Trust received 924 reports of anti-Semitic incidents, including 86 violent assaults.

Any such attack "is one attack too many," Rudd said.

“We are providing £13.4 million ($17 million) for guarding at all Jewish state, free and independent schools, colleges, and nurseries, and at synagogues, and to support the continuing efforts of the police to provide security and reassurance to the Jewish community."

“We take the security of the Jewish community seriously, and we will continue to put in place the strongest possible measures to ensure the safety of this community – and all other communities too.”

Rudd also invoked the killing of British Labour Party politician Jo Cox to illustrate the dangers emmanating from extremism.

“Earlier this year we saw the shocking and senseless murder of my parliamentary colleague Jo Cox in her own constituency by the far-right extremist Thomas Mair," she said. "This demonstrated the evil of far-right extremism and acts of terrorism."

“And we know that far right and extreme right wing groups have become increasingly sophisticated in the use of social media for promotion and for recruitment.”

Rudd stressed her determination to "challenge extremism in all its forms and the terrible damage it can cause to individuals, families and communities.”

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