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Jewish Lawyer In Scotland Fined For Argument With Pro-Palestinian Lecturer

(JTA) — A Jewish lawyer in Scotland was fined and ordered to participate in diversity training after an online argument with a pro-Palestinian university lecturer.

Glasgow criminal defense lawyer Matthew Berlow called Dr. Karolin Hijazi a “thin-skinned…wannabe social justice warrior” and a “snowflake” after she complained about his social media posts, the Herald Scotland reported.

Hijazi, who told the Herald she is “of Palestinian descent” contacted the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission over the exchange between Berlow and the Aberdeen branch of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

The argument took place in 2016 over a protest by the group of a kiosk selling Dead Sea products.

“You simply found a soft Jewish target to aim your bile at,” Berlow said in response to an anonymous post by an administrator of the SPSC Aberdeen Facebook page which said the business was a “legitimate target for boycott.”

Hijazi later sent screenshots of the online dispute with Berlow to the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission which decided there were “potential conduct issues” and referred it to the Law Society of Scotland.

Berlow was ordered to pay a $2,300 fine and undergo diversity training, he said he will appeal the diversity training, saying it is unnecessary. He called the fine “the cost of defending Israel.”

He described himself to the newspaper in an interview on Sunday as a “Zionist” who supports the creation of a Palestinian state in the Middle East in a peace deal promoting a two-state solution, and is the founder of a group called Arabs and Jews for Peace. He also said he is married to a Muslim woman.

Alyssa Fisher is a news writer at the Forward. Email her at [email protected], or follow her on Twitter at @alyssalfisher

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