Jewish groups: Labour leadership ‘cannot be trusted’ to deal with antisemitism
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Jewish groups: Labour leadership ‘cannot be trusted’ to deal with antisemitism

Top party officials opposed recommendations to suspend activists accused of Jew hate, according to a report in the Observer

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn

Jewish groups have renewed calls for an independent ombudsman after it emerged high-ranking Labour officials opposed the suspension of activists accused of antisemitism.

Top party officials opposed recommendations from their own investigations team to suspend activists accused of antisemitism, as reported by the Observer.

An official acting on behalf of general secretary Jennie Formby disagreed with the recommendations in emails shown to the Observer.

The correspondence dates from March to May last year, which was after Corbyn pledged in a letter to have “zero tolerance for antisemites”.

The Jewish Leadership Council, Board of Deputies and Community Security Trust issued a joint statement on Sunday in response to the revelation.

It says: “When we met Mr Corbyn and his team last April we asked for his personal leadership on antisemitism and were explicitly told that he does not intervene in individual cases because it is all handled by the NEC.

“This latest revelation shows that cases were routinely referred to his office for their advice and direction. Whether it was a brazen untruth or an inept mishandling of a serious issue is almost irrelevant at this point.

“The conclusion is the same – the Labour leadership cannot be trusted on this issue and vindicates our request for a genuinely independent, mutually-agreed ombudsman to oversee Labour’s handling of antisemitism disciplinary cases.”

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