Livingstone attacks disciplinary hearing as 'right-wing' plot

Livingstone says antisemitism allegations arise from his support for Palestinians


Ken Livingstone, who has been suspended from the Labour Party since April 2016, has released his submission to the party’s National Constitutional Committee (NCC).

Mr Livingstone is due to appear before the NCC on Thursday and Friday to answer the charge that he engaged in conduct ‘grossly detrimental’ to the party.

In a series of radio and TV interviews following accusations of antisemitism against Labour MP Naz Shah last April, Mr Livingstone made repeated reference to Hitler and Zionism. He told Vanessa Feltz that Hitler had supported the establishment of a Jewish state in 1932 "before he went mad and murdered six million Jews."

Mr Livingstone cites support from five Jewish Labour members, including Diana Neslen, Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi and Walter Wofgang, prominent members of Jews for Justice for Palestinians.

In his submission he says that Hitler "had the effect of supporting" Zionism movement, referencing the 1933 "Transfer Agreement" which he claims was designed to allow German Jews emigrating to Palestine to retain some of the value of their property in Germany by purchasing German goods.

"This agreement, between the Nazis and a section of Zionism, was not referred to in order to express hostility to Jewish people. The Transfer Agreement was a major political issue at the time as the Jewish movement to boycott German goods was a huge international campaign to turn public opinion against Nazi Germany."

He adds: "In my remarks to Vanessa Feltz, I was just pointing out that the Nazi policy in relation to the Transfer Agreement had the effect of supporting Zionism."

In a statement released today, Mr Livingstone said: “I have broken no Labour Party rule. I am being attacked by the right-wing of the Labour Party because I support Palestinian human rights and strongly back our Leader Jeremy Corbyn. There is no real evidence against me so hopefully the Labour panel will dismiss the charge against me. Only a biased and rigged jury could find against me.

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