Labour MP calls on Jeremy Corbyn to act against antisemitism in party


Veteran Jewish Labour MP Louise Ellman has repeated her criticism of the party’s failure to tackle antisemitism among its members.

She said some activists were being allowed to “get away” with Jew-hate comments online, and called on leader Jeremy Corbyn to take action.

Mr Corbyn has repeatedly said antisemitism is unacceptable. The party has suspended a series of members in the past month for making offensive remarks about Jewish people.

Last month Ms Ellman told the JC she had raised her concerns about Jew-hatred in Labour at a meeting of MPs. She said she had received assurances from Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.

Speaking on the Sky News Murnaghan show on Sunday, Ms Ellman said: “I am very concerned about antisemitism in the Labour Party. Most members of the Labour Party are not antisemitic but some are.

"Some are being allowed to get away with posting antisemitic comments in their tweets and on their websites. I have raised this in parliamentary meetings."

A Labour councillor in Liverpool, where Ms Ellman represents the Riverside constituency, posted a tweet on Friday in which he said a Labour party meeting had seen one member claim Israel had set up terror group Isis, and another blame Israel for rising antisemitism in Britain.

Nick Small said the comments were “abhorrent” and that “people with these views have no place in our party”.

Also speaking on Sunday, Mr McDonnell told the BBC’s Andrew Marr that criticism of Israel and opposition to its government’s policies could not be allowed to turn into antisemitism.

“As soon as Jewish people start telling us that there is antisemitism in our party we have to sit up and listen,” Mr McDonnell said.

He repeated his call for life bans for those making antisemitic remarks, and pledged to work with the Board of Deputies to challenge Jew-hatred in society.

“We have to root it out, I’m not having it in our party,” he said.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive