Corbyn fails in bid to overturn ruling after being sued by Israel activist

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Corbyn fails in bid to overturn ruling after being sued by Israel activist

Judge dismissed the ex Labour leader's argument that his words spoken about Richard Millett "conveyed a statement of opinion” and ruled they were defamatory

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Jeremy Corbyn speaking at the 2013 meeting, where he made the English irony remarks. Picture courtesy of the Daily Mail
Jeremy Corbyn speaking at the 2013 meeting, where he made the English irony remarks. Picture courtesy of the Daily Mail

Jeremy Corbyn has failed in his attempt to overturn a High Court judge’s ruling after being sued for defamation by Richard Millett.

In a judgment handed down on Tuesday Lord Justice Warby dismissed the former Labour leader’s argument that his words spoken about the pro-Israel campaigner Millett “conveyed a statement of opinion” and instead ruled they were defamatory.

The libel case, which can now proceed, was brought by Millett and relates to an appearance made by Mr Corbyn on the BBC’s Andrew Marr show in September 2018, in which he was asked about the then notorious “English irony” speech he had made in 2013.

He said Corbyn defamed him by accusing him of being “disruptive and abusive” at a 2013 meeting featuring a Palestinian speaker.

Procedurally, lawyers for Corbyn can now serve a defence if he they wish to argue that facts in the case were true.

Corbyn had mounted an appeal against preliminary findings made by Justice Saini.

Three appeal judges considered arguments at a Court of Appeal hearing in London last month.

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