London Mayor Boris Johnson has interjected himself into a controversy surrounding a sponsorship deal between Transport for London and Emirates Airlines for the Thames Cable Car.
It came to light earlier this week that TfL, the local government body responsible for most aspects of the transport system in London, signed a contract with Emirates, sponsor of the Thames Cable Car, in which it must abide by United Arab Emirates rules on having no ties to Israel or Israeli businesses.
However, Johnson said he was unaware of the stipulation when the contract was signed, and ordered TfL to renegotiate the contract in good faith.
The mayor’s official spokesman said: “The mayor was unaware of the clause in question, the details having been drawn up by TfL officials. When he was told about the clause yesterday he asked Sir Peter Hendy to speak to Emirates.”
“Following those discussions Emirates agreed to remove the clause and re-work the wording. The mayor is pleased Emirates has moved quickly to clarify the situation.”
Zionist Federation chairman Paul Charney, who earlier in the week slammed the deal, welcomed the news, saying, “I would personally like to thank Sir Peter Hendy from TfL for urgently resolving this matter with Emirates Airlines. We must remain vigilant against any back-door attempts to boycott Israel in the UK.”
The Emirates Air Line cable car connects the Docklands area on the north bank of the Thames with Greenwich on the south bank. It opened in June last year, ahead of the Olympics, and was praised by Mayor Johnson.