Liv­ing­stone prom­ises le­gal ac­tion

The Jewish Chronicle - - NEWS - BY MAR­CUS DYSCH PO­LIT­I­CAL ED­I­TOR

KEN LIV­ING­STONE HAS pledged to seek a ju­di­cial re­view if he loses a Labour Party dis­ci­plinary hear­ing over his com­ments about Hitler and Zion­ism.

The for­mer Mayor of Lon­don told BBC 5 Live’s Emma Bar­nett that he ex­pected to lose the case — due to be heard on Thurs­day and Fri­day next week — but that he would take fur­ther ac­tion.

Mr Liv­ing­stone was sus­pended by Labour in April last year for bring­ing the party into dis­re­pute. He had claimed Hitler “was sup­port­ing Zion­ism be­fore he went mad and ended up killing six mil­lion Jews”.

In his in­ter­view on Wed­nes­day, Mr Liv­ing­stone ap­peared to claim he had been quoted out of con­text last year and that the re­ac­tion, par­tic­u­larly from the Board of Deputies and Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, had stemmed from false re­port­ing of his re­marks.

He said he had heard from “rab­bis” and other Jews who had told him his com­ments were cor­rect and sup­ported his case.

Re­fer­ring to the dis­ci­plinary hear­ing, Mr Liv­ing­stone, a close ally of Labour leader Jeremy Cor­byn, said: “I’m afraid we’ll have to be off to a ju­di­cial re­view in the courts and in the court the is­sue will be, what was ac­tu­ally said and what is the truth, and the Labour Party has got no chance of win­ning a ju­di­cial re­view.

“I’m ba­si­cally re­tired. I’m not seek­ing of­fice. I haven’t asked Jeremy or

didn’t ask Ed Miliband to send me to the House of Lords or any­thing like that. I’m a house hus­band, but I’m not hav­ing my po­lit­i­cal ca­reer de­fined at the end that I’m an­ti­semitic.”

Mr Liv­ing­stone, who ran as an In­de­pen­dent can­di­date against Labour in the 2000 Lon­don may­oral elec­tion, also called for Labour to sus­pend MPs who were “dis­loyal” to Mr Cor­byn.

“Those that have been most over the top I think should be sus­pended. I think the other thing that Jeremy should do is re-in­tro­duce au­to­matic re-se­lec­tion. It’s

re­ally ridicu­lous that MPs in safe seats have a job for life,” he said.

“I’m par­tic­u­larly talk­ing about Chuka Umunna, Wes Street­ing — ba­si­cally it’s the same group of MPs who were scream­ing that I’d said Hitler was a Zion­ist and I was an­ti­semitic. The mo­ment that is­sue went on hold, they were then blam­ing Jeremy for Bri­tain vot­ing to leave. Just end­less crit­i­cism. It’s only about a dozen of them.

“The sim­ple fact is they are con­sciously un­der­min­ing Jeremy and dam­ag­ing the Labour Party.”

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