Is­raeli Labour party breaks off re­la­tions with Cor­byn

Cyprus Today - - UK -

IS­RAEL’S Labour Party said on Tues­day it had sus­pended re­la­tions with Jeremy Cor­byn, the leader of Bri­tain’s Labour party, ac­cus­ing him of sanc­tion­ing anti-Semitism and show­ing hos­til­ity to­wards Is­raeli poli­cies.

Mr Cor­byn, who un­ex­pect­edly be­came party head in 2015, is a sup­porter of Pales­tinian rights and a critic of Is­rael. He has re­peat­edly faced ac­cu­sa­tions of turn­ing a blind eye to anti-Semitic com­ments in the party and among groups he sup­ports.

“It is my re­spon­si­bil­ity to ac­knowl­edge the hos­til­ity you have shown to the Jewish com­mu­nity and the anti-Semitic state­ments and ac­tions you have al­lowed as leader of the Labour party UK,” Is­raeli Labour Party leader Avi Gab­bay wrote in a let­ter to Mr Cor­byn, dis­trib­uted to the me­dia.

Last month, Bri­tish Jewish groups held a street protest out­side par­lia­ment, ac­cus­ing Mr Cor­byn of fail­ing to tackle anti-Semitism in party ranks be­cause of a far-left world view hos­tile to Jews.

Mr Cor­byn has said he recog­nises that anti-Semitism has sur­faced within his party. He has apol­o­gised for the pain this has caused and pledged to re­dou­ble his ef­forts to stamp it out.

“Jeremy has pledged to be a mil­i­tant op­po­nent of anti-Semitism,” a spokes­woman said on Tues­day.

“He has re­peat­edly em­pha­sised the cen­tral role of the Jewish com­mu­nity in the Labour Party and the im­por­tance of en­sur­ing it is a sup­port­ive and wel­com­ing en­vi­ron­ment for all com­mu­ni­ties.”

Mr Gab­bay had said in his let­ter that Is­rael was re­minded of the hor­rors of anti-Semitism in Europe as it ap­proached Holo­caust and Hero­ism Re­mem­brance Day this week.

“As such, I write to in­form you of the tem­po­rary sus­pen­sion of all for­mal re­la­tions between the Is­rael Labour party and the leader of the Labour Party UK,” he said.

Mr Gab­bay said Mr Cor­byn had shown “very pub­lic ha­tred” to­wards Is­raeli gov­ern­ment poli­cies, in­clud­ing those where the op­po­si­tion and the rul­ing coali­tion are aligned.

Is­raeli Labour is part of the “Zion­ist Union” fac­tion in Is­rael’s Knes­set, which con­trols 24 of the leg­is­la­ture’s 120 seats.

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