Israeli embassy 'tried to interfere' in UK legal proceedings against Palestine Action

Israeli embassy 'tried to interfere' in UK legal proceedings against Palestine Action
Palestine Action, who acquired documents showing Israeli interference in UK legal proceedings, has members currently facing trial over protests against Israeli arms company Elbit Systems.
2 min read
21 August, 2023
The director general of the Attorney General's Office emphasised the independence of the Crown Prosecution Office to the Israeli embassy [Getty]

Officials from Israel's embassy in London allegedly attempted to persuade the UK's attorney general to intervene in cases relating to the prosecution of pro-Palestine protesters, according to an activist group.

In the heavily redacted documents obtained by Palestine Action under a freedom of information request, and seen by The New Arab, Attorney General's Office (AGO) Director General Doug Wilson emailed the Israeli embassy affirming that "the CPS [Crown Prosecution Service] makes its prosecution decisions and manages its casework independently".

He also noted that "the Law Officers are unable to intervene on an individual case or comment on issues related to active proceedings".


He did however confirm that the "Home Office is already aware of the matter in question," and were "flagging our discussion to colleagues there to make them aware of your representations and the gravity of the situation".

These comments from the email reaffirm minutes of meetings between the two, recorded in the document, where Wilson spoke of the independence of the CPS and informed the embassy on new parliamentary legislation on protests.

He also offered to follow up the embassy's requests with the Home Office, according to the documents.

Palestine Action stated that the documents show "that the Israeli state is attempting to exert top-level diplomatic influence to lock up those who stand against its war machine", the group said.

Activists from Palestine Action are engaged in a campaign attempting to disrupt the operations of Israeli defence electronics company Elbit Systems in the UK. As a result, its members have faced prosecution.

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The group also stated that many of the charges its members face "have been brought about because the heads of the British Attorney General's Office, Ministry of Justice, and police have been working in close collaboration with an apartheid state".

Following the revelation, Palestine Action called on its supporters to "undertake research themselves, and to find what else is out there."

The New Arab emailed the Israeli Embassy for comment but received none at the time of publication, although the mission noted to The Guardian that the embassy "under no circumstances would interfere in UK legal proceedings."