by Stephen Oryszczuk

Jewish leaders have heavily criticised the Liberal Democrat party on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz after anti-Israel MP David Ward referred to “genocide in Palestine” in his Holocaust message.

The controversial Member of Parliament for Bradford East, who has in the past caused outrage by equating the Holocaust with “Palestinian suffering,” was at it again this week, as the world remembered victims of the Shoah.

Lib Dem MP David Ward

Lib Dem MP David Ward

He wrote: “On Holocaust Memorial Day it is imperative that we share the memory of the millions who have been murdered in the Holocaust and subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Palestine, Bosnia and Darfur.”

Community leaders reacted in disbelief, calling on the party to finally take action against the politician, whose previous outbursts on Israel and the Middle East earned him a suspension from parliament.

“David Ward is a serial offender,” said Jewish Leadership Council chief executive Simon Johnson. “His continual disrespect of the Holocaust makes him raging hypocrite.”

He added: “The fact his offensive views continue to be tolerated by the party is causing many in the community to ask serious questions about how real the commitment of the party’s leadership to eliminating hatred and discrimination.”

Party spokesman Tim Hobden confirmed: “The quote was not approved by the party” but did not immediately say whether any disciplinary action would be taken against Ward for the latest remarks.