Labour Split: Seven MPs resign

SEVEN MPs have resigned from the Labour Party in protest at Jeremy Corbyn’s approach to Brexit and anti-Semitism.

The seven MPS are inclusive of the following: Chuka Umunna, Luciana Berger, Chris Leslie, Angela Smith, Mike Gapes, Gavin Shuker and Ann Coffey.

Berger stated that Labour had become institutionally anti-Semitic and she was “embarrassed and ashamed” to stay.

Corbyn said he was “disappointed” the MPs had felt unable to continue working for the policies that “inspired millions” at the 2017 election.

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell said the “honourable thing for them to do” would be to stand down and fight by-elections.

He said Labour was “a family”, adding: “We shouldn’t splinter in this way. It is better to remain in the party, fight your corner.”

The MPs, who all back a further EU referendum, are not launching a new political party – they will sit in Parliament as the Independent Group.

Chuka Umunna said they had “taken the first step” and urged other Labour MPs – and members of other parties – to join them in “building a new politics”.

“It is time we dumped this country’s old-fashioned politics and created an alternative that does justice to who we are today and gives this country a politics fit for the here and now – the 21st Century,” he said at a launch event in central London.

He also added he would be “no merger” with the Liberal Democrats, who have 11 MPs, and the group wanted to “build a new alternative”.

Chris Leslie said the seven would have their first formal meeting “in a few days” time to “assign roles and responsibilities”.

 

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