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Sinn Féin meeting with Irish Jewish Council cancelled because of coronavirus

Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald was scheduled to meet the Irish Jewish Representative Council on Tuesday

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A meeting between Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald and the Irish Jewish Representative Council has been cancelled after she pulled out of public engagements because her children were potentially exposed to the coronavirus.

Maurice Cohen, the Representative Council’s chairman, said that the meeting had been scheduled for Tuesday in the Irish parliament, the Dáil. Mr Cohen said that the Sinn Féin leader’s office “is keeping in contact”.

“We will be setting a new date as soon as it becomes clear when we are both available,” he said.

Ms McDonald cancelled public engagements and Sinn Fein rallies across Ireland as she would “like to stay close to home”, after a case of coronavirus was confirmed at her children’s school, 

Her children have been placed in a two-week quarantine. The case is the first to be confirmed in the Republic of Ireland.

Sinn Féin’s meeting with the Jewish Representative Council had been planned in the aftermath of an antisemitism scandal involving one of the Irish republican party’s newly-elected members of the Dáil, Réada Cronin.

Ms Cronin had wrote a number of social media posts between 2012 and 2015 including comparing Israelis to monkeys, alleging that Jeremy Corbyn had been targeted by Mossad, and saying that Hitler was a pawn of a Rothschild-owned bank.

She later apologised “unreservedly and wholeheartedly”, saying that the remarks were “glib” and “off-the-cuff”

Mr Cohen said on February 21 that he was intending to ask the Sinn Féin leader that her TDs “be educated on the IHRA working definition of antisemitism and that they adhere to these guidelines in all discourse”.

Sinn Féin broke the almost century-old duopoly of centrist party Fianna Fáil and the centre-right Fine Gael in the election on February 8.

The party has since opened a commanding lead in Irish opinion polls.

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