Willsman antisemitism case has taken ‘too long’, admits Starmer

Labour leader tells LBC's Nick Ferrari 'I am determined we will deal with it.'


Sir Keir Starmer has admitted it has taken his party  "too long" to deal with the antisemitism disciplinary case involving suspended Labour executive committee member Pete Willsman.

Pressed by LBC radio presenter Nick Ferrari over a 16-month delay in completing an investigation into comments made by the left-winger, Sir Keir conceded, "it has taken too long - and I want it to be speeded up".

The Labour leader said that dealing with Labour's anti-Jewish racism crisis has remained one of his "central concerns" ever since he became leader in April.

Mr Ferrari had asked: "In May of last year, the Labour Party was given a recording of Pete Willsman saying that the Israeli Embassy was behind claims of antisemitism. Mr Willsman is still in the party 16 months on?"

Sir Keir responded by saying he did not want to comment on the individual case but added he "did not want to dodge the challenge."

He then said: "On the cases, on the particular challenge of the speed, I now get regular reports on my desk telling me about why cases aren't going as quickly as they should.

"We have got new processes in place, we've got a new approach. We are acting much much more quickly."

Mr Ferrari then repeated the fact that 16 months had passed since Mr Willsman was suspended.

But the Labour leader told the monthly Call Keir show: "Yes I know that and we working on that, and I am determined we will deal with it. 

I think in fairness, anybody looking at this will say we are taking this seriously. We are taking action. And we will be judged by the action we take.”


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