David Ward formally censured by Lib Dems over 'the Jews' and Holocaust slur

David Ward

David Ward

A Liberal Democrat MP summoned to meet his party whips following comments accusing "the Jews" of failing to learn the lessons of history has been formally censured for his remarks.

David Ward made the slur on his personal blog on Friday, having signed the Holocaust Educational Trust's Book of Remembrance to mark Holocaust Memorial Day.

His accusation, that "the Jews… could within a few years of liberation from the death camps be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians in the new state of Israel and continue to do so on a daily basis in the West Bank and Gaza" was criticised by party officials and by Jewish and non-Jewish organisations and officials.

Mr Ward, who said he had meant no offence but refused to retract his comments about Israel, was told to meet the Liberal Democrat whip on Monday.

Following his discussions with Mr Ward, Alistair Carmichael MP sent a letter calling on the Bradford East MP to "confirm the undertaking that you gave to me in our meeting that you will not again use the phrase 'the Jews' in this context".

"I am strongly of the view that your use of the phrase "the Jews" in this context was unacceptable and I formally censure you for that," said Mr Carmichael.

Mr Ward responded: "I confirm that I am prepared to give you the undertaking that you asked for in our meeting."

Last updated: 10:52am, January 29 2013