Starmer and Nandy ready to ‘rebuke’ anti-Israel Labour conference motion

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Starmer and Nandy ready to ‘rebuke’ anti-Israel Labour conference motion

Exclusive: Party's leader and shadow foreign secretary are set to distance themselves from a motion being brought forward on Monday.

Palestine flags are waved during the Labour conference 2019 (Jewish News)
Palestine flags are waved during the Labour conference 2019 (Jewish News)

Keir Starmer and Labour’s shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy are ready to distance themselves from an anti-Israel motion set to be put before the party’s annual conference on Monday, Jewish News has learned.

The motion, which has been circulated among local Labour branches by the pro-Jeremy Corbyn Campaign for Labour Democracy and Young Labour groups, was selected for tomorrow’s international debate after votes showed it was the seventh most popular topic for debate.

It is understood that the Labour leadership has taken a dim view of the motions, which fail to take into account Labour’s long-time position in favour of a two-state solution.

Shadow foreign secretary Nandy has also stressed Labour supports Israel’s right to defend itself from attack by groups such as Hamas – and that the party are against the United Nations singling out Israel for condemnation and will vote against it in power.

Well-placed Labour sources confirm: “Both Keir and Lisa have got little time for these motions on Israel and Palestine.

Former Labour Party leader and Hamas’s friend Jeremy Corbyn speaking at a demonstration outside the Israeli embassy in London.

“They are adamant they don’t represent that policy of the party, and as such, are not acceptable.

“Dissuasions have yet to be concluded about the exact wording of the motion that will be presented before conference on Monday.

“But both Keir and Lisa are ready to issue a rebuke of the motion as it stands, and of those behind it.”

On Saturday, it emerged that Labour CLPs had made the Israel/Palestine  the seventh most important issue out of a list of 10 that could be debated at conference.

The hard-left Campaign for Labour Democracy and Young Labour – who had previously tweeted the Hamas chant “From the river to the sea – Palestine will be free” – were among the main drivers of the motion on Israel and Palestine.

There has long been concern among Labour moderates that the views of CLP delegates are not those held by the wider membership or voters at general elections.

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