Baroness Chakrabarti removed from Labour's Shadow Cabinet by new leader Sir Keir Starmer

Her name became synonymous with the 'whitewash' in her 2016 investigation into antisemitism in Jeremy Corbyn's Labour


Baroness Chakrabarti - whose name became synonymous with her "whitewash" 2016 investigation into antisemitism in Jeremy Corbyn's Labour - has been removed from the party's Shadow Cabinet by its new leader Sir Keir Starmer.

Lord Falconer was appointed to replace her as shadow attorney general after Sir Keir's election on Saturday.

Lord Falconer, who was once in talks to lead a review of how Labour handled antisemitism complaints, was Justice Secretary under Tony Blair.

Last year he had called for an "urgent investigation" into claims Mr Corbyn’s advisers Seamus Milne, the leader’s director of strategy, and Andrew Murray, the Unite union’s chief of staff, had intervened to lift the suspension of Jewish Voice For Labour activist Glyn Secker.

Sir Keir also gave former Labour leader Ed Miliband a return to the shadow cabinet as shadow business secretary.

Sir Keir said: “I’m proud to have appointed a shadow cabinet that showcases the breadth, depth and talents of the Labour Party.

“This is a new team that will be relentlessly focused on acting in the national interest to respond to the coronavirus pandemic and rebuilding Labour so that it can win the next election.”

Emily Thornberry, the former shadow foreign secretary under Corbyn, is now shadow international trade secretary.

Ms Thornberry was replaced in the shadow foreign secretary role by Lisa Nandy, who stood to be leader and narrowly beat Sir Keir to the nomination by the Jewish Labour Movement.

Shortly after JLM chose her to be its candidate, Ms Nandy criticism over her endorsement of pledges from the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which included one over the right return of over Palestinians to Israel.

But Ms Nandy has been outspoken in her criticism of antisemitism in her party and his declared herself as a Zionist who had opposed the anti-Israel Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

Sir Keir also removed pro-Corbyn figures Richard Burgon, party chairman Ian Lavery and Barry Gardiner from his frontbench, all of whom had defended Mr Corbyn over claims he failed to tackle antisemitism within the party.

Rebecca Long-Bailey, who stood against Sir Keir and was dubbed the "continuity Corbyn" candidate, is the new shadow education secretary.

But in a move likely to cause concern within the Jewish community, Andy McDonald, Mr Corbyn’s shadow transport secretary, stayed on the frontbench as the new shadow employment rights and protections secretary.

Mr McDonald had repeatedly denied claims of antisemitism under the previous leader and was at the centre of further controversy after he was forced to deny comparing the Holocaust to the situation in Palestine.

He was shown a tweet by his policy adviser Karl Hansen, which called Israel "an apartheid state". Mr McDonald replied that Israelis and Palestinians lived under “two different systems”.

“As an MP I had the privilege, with the Holocaust Educational Trust, to go over to Auschwitz and take over the enormity of that atrocity and that has absolutely shaped and formed my thinking and to see what such an abomination that was,” Mr McDonald reportedly told Sky’s Paterson on Sunday programme.

“At the same time, I’ve also travelled to the West Bank and seen what life is like on a daily basis for Palestinians.”

In response, Karen Pollock, chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, said: "Do not use your visit with us to Auschwitz to validate inappropriate comparisons. It’s offensive.”

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