The Liberal Democrats will not be taking disciplinary action against Bradford East MP David Ward overa tweet in which he spoke of “control of MPs” by supporters of Israel.
Nearly two weeks after MPs voted overwhelmingly to urge recognition of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, the Liberal Democrat politician took to Twitter last night to say: “After Commons #Palestine vote what next? Need to expose Pro-#Israel control of MPs against recognition.”
Just 12 politicians – 6 Tories, 5 DUP and one Lib Dem – voted against the motion while more than half didn’t vote at all. Many were concerned that recognition should follow successful negotiations and opposed such unilateral steps.
Simon Johnson, chief executive of the Jewish Leadership Council , said: “Does Mr Ward have nothing better to do for his constituents on a Saturday night than to think up new ways to use old-fashioned insults about control of MP’s?
“Once again, he is wrong, offensive to his fellow MPs and proving himself to be hopelessly out of touch.”
Labour MP John Woodcock responded to Ward on the micro-blogging site: “You’re a disgusting little man. Your party should throw you out.”
But a Lib Dem spokesperson said : “The tweet specifically related to David’s concerns some supporters of Israel actively lobbied MPs to try to prevent the recognition of Palestine.
“It is in no way a suggestion Jewish people are trying to control MPs.”