Rabbi brands Corbyn a liar over claim to tackle antisemitism

Rabbi brands Corbyn a liar over claim to tackle antisemitism

Moshe Freedman of New West End Synagogue was among 69 rabbis who wrote to the Labour leader urging action.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn

An Orthodox rabbi has rejected Jeremy Corbyn’s claim that the Labour Party will work with the community to stop Jew-hate as ‘an out-and-out lie’.

Rabbi Moshe Freedman of New West End Synagogue took to Twitter to respond to Jeremy Corbyn’s message, claiming the party “will work with Jewish communities to eradicate antisemitism”.

The faith leader, who was one of 69 rabbis to write to the Labour leader in July urging the party to adopt the full International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism, posted an email from general secretary Jennie Formby, outlining the party’s response.

He wrote that after co-signing the letter, Labour promised “the NEC working group will be in contact to discuss this consultation further.

Moshe Freedman

“This was on 19th July 2018 and I still haven’t heard back. I don’t expect to”.

In early September, Labour backed the IHRA definition of antisemitism, with a clause to allow criticism of Israel.

Rabbi Freedman added, that Labour thinks “that having adopted the IHRA definition with caveats, they don’t need to bother. They are wrong. #LabourAntisemitism is more than just an issue with their definition of anti-Semitism.”

He adds, that antisemitism “is a systemic and fundamental problem ingrained in @jeremycorbyn and his warped ideology, especially with respect to Israel.”

It comes after Jeremy Corbyn’s speech to the Labour Party’s annual conference in Liverpool was deemed “a missed opportunity” by Jewish representatives.

While acknowledging a “tough” summer he promised to “eradicate anti-Semitism both from our party and wider society,” telling Jews: “We are your ally.”

Corbyn acknowledged the issue had caused “immense hurt and anxiety in the Jewish community” and “great dismay” in the party, as he urged the Jewish community to help “draw a line under it”.

Jewish Leadership Council chief executive Simon Johnson was left unimpressed, however, saying: “This was a missed opportunity from the Labour Leader. The same words we have heard for months.”

Board of Deputies’ president Marie van der Zyl said Corbyn’s words “mean nothing until Labour takes the necessary steps to deal with anti-Semitism in its ranks,” adding: “Words have long ceased to be enough. Actions are what matter.”

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