Bomb threat cancels Balfour Declaration event at Florida Jewish museum


(JTA) — An event scheduled to take place at the Jewish Museum of Florida on the Balfour Declaration was cancelled following a bomb threat.

Law enforcement apprehended a Florida International University student after he allegedly issued the threat ahead of the event, which was slated to take place Thursday, the American Jewish Committee’s Miami office said in a statement. “We won’t be intimidated by threats and will continue to stand for our principles and values,” Brian Siegal, the Florida office;’s director, wrote.

But, added Siegal, who was supposed to speak at the event, “We must take seriously the guidance of law enforcement authorities who advised that in the interests of public safety our educational event could not take place as scheduled. We hope to reschedule in the very near future.”

The event was to celebrate the centenary of the 1917 Balfour Declaration, named for Arthur Balfour, the United Kingdom’s foreign secretary at the time. In it, the British government vowed to help establish a national home for the Jewish people in the Land of Israel without jeopardizing the rights of other area inhabitants.

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It was the first formal recognition and approval by a world power of the Zionist cause. The Palestinian Authority has demanded Britain apologize for the declaration, which British Prime Minister Theresa May on Thursday declined to do so, saying she and her nation were proud of it.

Other speakers on the program were Israeli Consul General Lior Haiat, British Consul General David Prodger, Tel Aviv University Professor David Katz, Haifa University Professor Uri Ben Eliezer, and FIU Professor Eric Lob.

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