Labour has insisted it “poses no threat of any kind whatsoever to Jewish people” in response to comments by one of Donald Trump’s top allies.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Jewish leaders this week that he would “push back” against Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn if he takes any actions against British Jews, even before he can be elected prime minister.
He was responding to a question asked by a Jewish leader during a closed door meeting in New York.
The Washington Post reported on Saturday that an audio recording of the meeting was leaked to the newspaper.
It said that Pompeo was asked if Corbyn “is elected, would you be willing to work with us to take on actions if life becomes very difficult for Jews in the U.K.?”
Pompeo responded, according to the newspaper: “It could be that Mr. Corbyn manages to run the gantlet and get elected. It’s possible. You should know, we won’t wait for him to do those things to begin to push back. We will do our level best.”
“It’s too risky and too important and too hard once it’s already happened,” he also said.
This comes amid a four-year row over antisemitism in the Labour Party, with senior members of the Jewish community accusing the leader of not taking strong-enough action on Jew-hate.
A staggering 55 percent of those polled by Comres for Jewish News this year, agreed that the Labour leader’s ‘failure to tackle antisemitism within his own party shows he is unfit’ for Downing Street.
Reacting to Pompeo’s comments, Labour told Jewish News it “is fully committed to the support, defence and celebration of the Jewish community and is implacably opposed to antisemitism in any form.”
It insisted that a “Labour government poses no threat of any kind whatsoever to Jewish people. The security and wellbeing of Jewish people is a priority for our party and in government we will always ensure schools, synagogues and institutions are properly protected.
Labour also accused President Trump’s administration of launching “attempts to decide who will be Britain’s next prime minister” which they branded as “an entirely unacceptable interference in the UK’s democracy.”
President Donald Trump during a visit to the UK last week refused to meet with Corbyn, and praised the prime ministerial aspirations of Boris Johnson, and Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage.