Talya Lador-Fresher, Israel's deputy chief of mission at the Israeli embassy in London, had to be shuffled out a side door and into a "get-away" car by Manchester police on Wednesday, following a lecture she gave at the University of Manchester that was crashed by pro-Palestinian student protestors.
The lecture, on the situation in the Middle East, which was originally supposed to take place months ago, was delayed because of early security concerns at the university - but went ahead Wednesday after university officials promised Ambassador Ron Prosor that his deputy's security would be guaranteed.
And indeed, Lador-Fresher managed to give her talk, although she was interrupted several times by students who hoisted Palestinian flags and called out anti-Israel slogans. But when she had finished speaking and was trying to head out of the auditorium, it became clear to her security that the way out was blocked by more demonstrators who had been waiting there throughout the hour-long event. The demonstrators had identified the Israeli embassy car and were surrounding it.
As such, it was decided by embassy security, together with the Manchester police, to evacuate her through a side door and drive her off campus in a police car. As she was leaving the area, demonstrators attacked the car, in an attempt, she says, to try and break the windshield. Lador-Fresher stressed that it was indeed an "unpleasant" experience which goes to highlight the decreasing lack of civility on campuses in Britain when it comes to Israel.
Ambassador Prosor, in turn, commended his deputy on "her fighting spirit" and said he expected a condemnation of such behavior from the university.
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