Lib Dems suspend pro-Palestine group over Facebook post calling British Jew 'pro-Israel lobbyist'

The Liberal Democrat Friends of Palestine now face a party investigation


The Liberal Democrats have suspended their Friends of Palestine group after it shared an article on Facebook that called a prominent British Jew a "pro-Israel lobbyist".

The group shared the article - published on anti-Israel blog Electronic Intifada - which said a "multi-millionaire pro-Israel lobbyist" was funding the breakaway group of independent MPs and added: "Others are likely to follow".

The "lobbyist" the article referred to is Sir David Garrard, the property developer, philathropist and former Labour Party donor.

He quit the party last year, saying he no longer felt "any affinity or connection" with it and accused the party of failing to stand up to "most blatant acts of antisemitism".

After the new independent group of MPs formed last month, Sir David told the Observer: "I've been asked whether I will financially support the new group. I have already done so."

Lib Dem members complained about the Facebook post, saying it was antisemitic. 

A party spokesman told the JC: "The party has suspended the Lib Dem Friends of Palestine organisation pending an investigation."

Meanwhile, Asa Winstanley, an Eletronic Intifada contributor, was suspended by Labour on Thursday, after it emerged he was a party member.

Mr Winstanley called the Jewish Labour Movement an "Israeli embassy proxy" that engaged in "shameless sabotage of the party" by submitting a dossier of Jew-hate in the party to the Equality and Human Rights Commission, which is now investigating.

He even attacked Momentum, the pro-Corbyn campaign group, for acknowledging Labour's antisemitism issue, saying it should rename itself "Momentum Friends of Israel".

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