Dichter guest of honor at London forum

British gov't amended law used by activists to obtain arrest warrants for alleged war crimes aimed at Israeli dignitaries.

December 18, 2012 04:17
1 minute read.
Former Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter

Former Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)

LONDON – Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter will attend a gala dinner in London on Tuesday night, as part of the Australia-Israel-UK Leadership Dialogue (AIULD), a forum designed to strengthen the three-way relationship between Australia, Israel and the UK through bringing together opinion leaders and decision makers from each country.

Dichter will travel to London without fear from arrest. Last year the British government amended the controversial universal jurisdiction law, used by activists to obtain arrest warrants for alleged war crimes aimed at Israeli dignitaries who visit the UK.

The law previously allowed private complaints of war crimes to be lodged against military personnel even if they were not British citizens and the alleged crimes were committed elsewhere. High profile targets in recent years have been former foreign minister Tzipi Livni and outgoing Defense Minister Ehud Barak.

Dichter will join MP Kevin Rudd, former prime minister of Australia; former prime minister Ehud Olmert; and Alistair Burt, Foreign Office minister for the Middle East at the prestigious dinner in central London, organized by the London-based think tank The Henry Jackson Society.

The speakers are set to discuss topics of mutual geopolitical interest, bringing together perspectives from all three countries along with the global context.

The Australia-Israel Leadership Forum (AILF) was launched in 2009 when Australian Albert Dadon took a delegation of leading Australian politicians, academics, businesspeople and media to meet their counterparts in Israel. The trip was led by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, who was then deputy prime minister.

In January 2012, UK participants joined the forum for the first time. The inaugural Australia- Israel-UK Leadership Dialogue included 15 senior politicians and decision makers from both government and opposition from all three countries along with key journalists.

Subjects that the group have discussed include national security, international relations, health, education, water technologies and climate change A two-day conference will kick off on Tuesday in parliament, organized by the Conservative Friends of Israel with AIULD delegates set to discuss an array of issues including the US leverage in the region following the presidential elections; working towards a two-state solution; the battle for Israel’s democracy, Arab Spring, Iran and the campaigning against Israel and how it is played out on campuses in Europe and Australia.

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