EXCLUSIVE: Labour officials accused of covering up MP hopeful's antisemitism

The JC has seen evidence appearing to show Kate Ramsden was told she could remain a candidate if she deleted a blog



Labour Party officials are facing damning new claims of a cover-up of blatant antisemitism by a candidate selected to fight next month's general election.

Evidence shown to the JC confirms that staff in Labour's compliance unit told a candidate standing for election in the Scottish seat of Gordon she could remain if she deleted a blog comparing the actions of Israel to those of a child abuser.

In an apparent reference to Jewish suffering in the Holocaust, Labour MP hopeful Kate Ramsden wrote: "Like many abusers, unable to reflect on their own abuse, and ending up recreating it in the abuse of others, exerting their power in those weaker than themselves because once they were the powerless."

This latest revelation comes hours after shadow chancellor John McDonnell claimed his party's approach to antisemitism had been "rapid and at times ruthless."

Ms Ramsden, a senior official with the Unison trade union, also wrote that antisemitism claims against Jeremy Corbyn were "orchestrated by the wealthy establishment who do not want a socialist Labour government."

She wrote of her opposition to the IHRA definition of antisemitism, which was eventually implemented by the party, and she claimed supporters of boycotting Israel goods were themselves victims of false claims of anti-Jewish racism.

In her blog Ms Ramsden also wrote: "To me the Israeli state is like an abused child who becomes an abusive adult."

Ms Ramsden added: "Like child abuse it has to stop... as we intervene with child abusers the international community needs to intervene with Israel."

She wrote scathingly: "I heard yesterday that almost 90 per cent of Jewish Israelis support their government."

The sweep of all Labour election candidates’ social media has been carried out in Labour's central London HQ over the past few weeks.

Jewish Leadership Council chair Jonathan Goldstein said: "This seems to be evidence of a deliberate cover up by Labour to hide the open antisemtism of a candidate. How many other candidates have also been instructed to cover up their pasts? All on a day where John McDonnell has lied to camera multiple times about what the party have done on not tackling antisemitism."

A Labour source, who spoke to the JC on the condition they remained anonymous, said they were "sickened" by the blind eye turned towards antisemitic posts made by "more than one candidate" now representing the party on December 12.

"Labour HQ has ordered the sweep through social media accounts of all candidates and any issues identified then have to be sent to Labour regional directors to check local perspectives," revealed the source.

"The sweep picked up a percentage of candidates demonstrating all sorts of nonsense, idiocy and sadly more serious content.

"What sickens me is that nothing appears to be done, except to cover-up clear examples of antisemitism amongst candidates."

Instead of taking action against the candidate in light of the promised zero tolerance approach to antisemitism pledged by Labour figures such as John McDonnell and Diane Abbott, Ms Ramsden was simply told to delete the offending postings.

A separate document shows that Labour's compliance unit did raise concerns about "tropey, conspiratorial" language used in Ms Ramsden's postings - but no action appears to have been taken.

A Labour official has clearly typed on the document: "This is pretty tropey, potentially conspiratorial."

But again Ms Ramsden was allowed to delete the messages ahead of her campaign to be elected as the MP for Gordon.

The Labour candidate, who works in children’s rights for Aberdeenshire Council and is Scottish representative on the Unison’s National Executive Council, has been a regular campaigner on Palestinian issues.

Speaking at Unison's Scottish Congress in 2017 she backed the Boycott, Sanction, Divestment (BDS) campaign against Israel, but said the movement was falsely conflated with antisemitism.”

Ms Ramsden also said Palestinian activists were "targeted with spurious allegations of antisemitism" on a weekly basis.

She claimed police were inundated with false allegations of anti-Jewish racism adding: “Of course they can take no action because there is no antisemitism."

On Monday, the JC exclusively revealed how Coventry South candidate Zarah Sultana had said she would "celebrate" the deaths of Tony Blair and Benjamin Netanyahu - while stating she backed "violent" Palestinian resistance.

“We took immediate action to have Kate Ramsden's candidacy reconsidered in light of the material that we found,” a Labour party source insisted on Thursay.

“Staff in Labour HQ found these posts when conducting extra due diligence checks. Staff immediately alerted Scottish Labour, who informed the Scottish Executive Committee, which decided to re-interview Kate Ramsden about the new posts.

“Kate Ramsden stood down as a candidate and is therefore not a Labour candidate in the election. The party took swift and robust action on this matter.”

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