For­eign Sec­re­tary may get rougher ride at this year’s Is­rael meet­ing


THE FOR­EIGN Sec­re­tary’s views on the Iran nu­clear deal and prospects for peace in the Mid­dle East will fea­ture at next week’s Con­ser­va­tive Party an­nual con­fer­ence.

Philip Ham­mond is due to speak at the Con­ser­va­tive Friends of Is­rael re­cep­tion on Tues­day night, in what is one of the most pop­u­lar Tory fringe ses­sions.

Mr Ham­mond proved a star draw last year, with hun­dreds of young party ac­tivists turn­ing out to hear him dis­cuss the fall-out from that sum­mer’s Gaza con­flict.This year, fol­low­ing the Iran nu­clear deal and his ap­par­ent dif­fer­ence of opin­ion with Is­raeli Prime Min­is­ter Ben­jamin Ne­tanyahu dur­ing a visit toJerusalem,MrHam­mond­mayfindhe re­ceives a slightly less warm welcome.

CFI’s new chair­man, Sir Eric Pick­les, will also speak, as will Ei­tan Na’eh, Is­rael’s deputy am­bas­sador to Bri­tain. The Mid­dle East is not ex­pected to fea­ture highly on this year’s con­fer­ence agenda or in the fringe ses­sions. The clash with the fi­nal days of Suc­cot means Jewish groups, in­clud­ing the Board of Deputies, are not run­ning their tra­di­tional an­nual con­fer­ence events.

The Holo­caust Ed­u­ca­tional Trust will host a spe­cial ses­sion pay­ing trib­ute to the life of Sir Ni­cholas Win­ton. It will fea­ture Lady

Big draw: Philip Ham­mond Milena Gren­fell-Baines, who was one of the chil­dren saved by Sir Ni­cholas’s Kindertransport, and will be in­tro­duced by Tory party deputy chair­man, Robert Hal­fon.The con­fer­ence will be another land­mark for the Con­ser­va­tives’ chair­man, Lord Feld­man, and his deputy, Mr Hal­fon. The Jewish of­fi­cials have en­joyed greater promi­nence since May’s gen­eral elec­tion vic­tory. Twick­en­ham MP Ta­nia Mathias will speak at a ses­sion on a “just pol­i­cy­forPales­tine”host­ed­bythe Palestine Sol­i­dar­ity Cam­paign and NewS­tates­man mag­a­zi­neon Tues­day. The event is also due to fea­tureArthurGood­man,Jews­for Jus­tice for Pales­tini­ans’ par­lia­men­tary li­ai­son.


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