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‘Expel Labour members who make anti-Semitic remarks’

Labour party members who make “disgusting” anti-Semitic comments should be expelled from the party, a shadow cabinet minister has said.

‘Expel Labour members who make anti-Semitic remarks’
26.09.2017
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Labour party members who make “disgusting” anti-Semitic comments should be expelled from the party, a shadow cabinet minister has said.

Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth told Sky News the party had a “zero tolerance” approach to the issue, as Labour again found itself at the centre of a row over claims of anti-Semitism in the midst of its annual conference in Brighton.

Controversy was again reignited on Monday when the Israeli-American author Miko Peled told a fringe event: “This is about free speech, the freedom to criticise and to discuss every issue, whether it’s the Holocaust: yes or no, Palestine, the liberation, the whole spectrum.

“There should be no limits on the discussion.”

The Daily Mail reported he said: “It’s about the limits of tolerance: We don’t invite the Nazis and give them an hour to explain why they are right; we do not invite apartheid South Africa racists to explain why apartheid was good for the blacks, and in the same way we do not invite Zionists – it’s a very similar kind of thing.”

Mr Ashworth told Sky News Sunrise: “If people are anti-Semitic, if people are denying the Holocaust that’s disgusting, it’s foul, they should be expelled from the Labour Party if they’re Labour Party members.

“We have a zero tolerance approach to anti-Semitism and the conference today is going to be voting on a motion put forward by the Jewish Labour movement to make clear our stance that anti-Semitism is disgusting, it’s unacceptable and we do not tolerate it in our Labour Party.”

Labour sources said the party was not responsible for the content of fringe events staged by groups with no affiliation to the party.

A party spokesman said: “Labour condemns anti-Semitism in the strongest possible terms and our National Executive Committee unanimously passed tough new rule changes last week.

“All groupings in the party should treat one another with respect. We will not tolerate anti-Semitism or Holocaust denial.”

The controversy is not the first time the party has been embroiled in allegations of anti-Semitism.

Former London mayor Ken Livingstone was suspended by the party – but not expelled – earlier this year after claiming Adolf Hitler supported Zionism in the 1930s.

Bradford West MP Naz Shah was suspended in 2016 after anti-Semitic social media posts emerged, with Ms Shah later apologising in the House of Commons. (SKYNEWS)

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