A Tory MP has asked the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards to check if Jeremy Corbyn is in breach of the Members’ Code of Conduct for not registering funds raised by a group whose founder once praised Hamas.
It comes after it emerged this weekend that Friends of Al-Aqsa, which was founded by Ismail Patel 19 years ago, raised £10,000 for Corbyn at a fundraising dinner last year, as reported by the Observer.
During hostilities in Gaza in 2009, Patel said: “Hamas is no terrorist organisation. The reason they hate Hamas is because they refuse to be subjugated, occupied by the Israeli state. We salute Hamas for standing up to Israel.”
Now, Hertmere MP Oliver Dowden has written to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards and the Electoral Commission, asking whether Corbyn should have declared the money.
There was confusion this week over whether the money had ever been transferred to the Labour leader. A spokesman for Corbyn, who is currently battling Owen Smith in a leadership challenge, said the cheque was written out to the wrong person, so it was never declared.
“I’m told a second cheque may have been sent but this was not received by the campaign,” he said, although Patel had “definitely donated” along with “a couple of others” but that it had been declared. “There is nothing dodgy going on,” he said.