Jeremy Corbyn has described Ken Livingstone’s comments on Zionism and Nazism as “grossly insensitive” and “deeply disappointing”, and implied that the former Mayor of London could face “further disciplinary action”.
In a statement released this afternoon, the Labour party leader criticised Mr Livingstone’s inability to “acknowledge or apologise for the hurt he has caused”.
Mr Corbyn’s comments came after more than 30 MPs from his own party publicly condemned yesterday's decision by Labour’s National Constitutional Committee not to expel Mr Livingstone.
The NCC announced last night that it was suspending Mr Livingstone from holding office in the party for one more year.
“Ken Livingstone’s comments have been grossly insensitive, and he has caused deep offence and hurt to the Jewish community”, said Mr Corbyn’s statement.
“Labour's independently elected National Constitutional Committee has found Ken guilty of bringing the party into disrepute and suspended him for two years.
“It is deeply disappointing that, despite his long record of standing up to racism, Ken has failed to acknowledge or apologise for the hurt he has caused. Many people are understandably upset that he has continued to make offensive remarks which could open him to further disciplinary action.
“Since initiating the disciplinary process, I have not interfered with it and respect the independence of the party’s disciplinary bodies. But Ken’s subsequent comments and actions will now be considered by the National Executive Committee after representations from party members.”