MP accuses Jackie Walker of ‘fantasy’ over claim she is being targeted by Israel

Labour's John Mann says Jackie Walker must provide evidence after she claims she is being targeted by Israel


John Mann, the MP who heads Parliament’s leading group against antisemitism, has accused suspended anti-Zionist activist Jackie Walker of pushing “fantasy conspiracies” after she claimed she was being targeted by Israel for being too left-wing.

Ms Walker – who was suspended twice by Labour in 2016 over comments in which she referred to Jews as the “chief financiers of the slave trade” and for remarks she made about Holocaust Memorial Day -  claimed she was being “undermined and discredited”.

But Labour’s John Mann accused Ms Walker of pushing “tropes” by suggesting she was the target of a campaign from the Jewish state.

The MP for Bassetlaw added: “That’s fantasy conspiracies, and that’s part of the problem – some people look for alleged conspiracies when in fact they should be looking at themselves and their behaviour.

“Provide us with the evidence - that’s a very, very serious allegation to me.

“I think if they can’t provide the evidence then clearly what they are saying is a problem, so they now have to provide the evidence, provide the proof of exactly what and how Israel has been involved.

“It’s yet another trope – put up or shut up, prove it.”

Ms Walker made her comments at a “Labour Against the Witch-hunt” protest outside a meeting of the party’s ruling National Executive Committee (NEC) in central London on Tuesday.

She claimed: "Israel made a very purposeful, open and public decision some few years ago, two or three years ago, that they would come after people like me.

“And they’ve put millions behind that campaign.

“Israel has targeted BDS activists and anti-Zionist activists and anti-Zionist Jews anyway - they will use whatever they can to undermine and discredit those people.”

Ms Walker – who made an appearance on the BBC’s Daily Politics show on Tuesday - denied being antisemitic and claimed her comments had been “taken out of context”.

She suggested her suspension was part of a purge of pro-Corbyn Labour members and an Israeli campaign against anti-Zionist activists.

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