Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Sir Ian Steps into Anti-Israeli PC Row

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Sir Ian Steps into Anti-Israeli PC Row

Article excerpt

Byline: JUSTIN DAVENPORT

SIR IAN BLAIR today acted to head off an extraordinary row over a decision to excuse a Muslim officer from guarding London's Israeli Embassy on moral grounds.

Alexander Omar Basha, who is attached to the Metropolitan Police's Diplomatic Protection Group, had asked for special dispensation not to work at the embassy in Kensington because of his objection to the country's bombing of Lebanon.

He is understood to have taken part in antiwar demonstrations when he was off-duty.

His request was approved by his immediate superiors and he was moved to another post. However, the decision appears not to have been passed to Sir Ian, the

Metropolitan Police Commissioner.

Today Scotland Yard announced that he had called for an urgent review.

In a statement he said: "Having learned of this issue I have asked for an urgent review and a full report into the circumstances."

Pc Basha, who is in his twenties, works at the Chelsea base of his unit. …

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