Corbyn has turned Labour into a home for ‘overt anti-Semites’

Jeremy Corbyn has made his party a home for ‘overt anti-Semites’, the Board of Deputies of British Jews said last night in its strongest statement yet.

Marie van der Zyl, the board’s president, accused him of leading Labour into a ‘dark place of ugly conspiracy theories’.

She said Labour could no longer be called an anti-racist party because it was actively blocking measures to tackle hatred – and punishing those who speak out against anti-Semitism.

Jeremy Corbyn faced mounting anger over Labour’s anti-Semitism row last night as it emerged the dispute has led to a bizarre call to throw him off his allotment

Marie van der Zyl, the board’s president, accused him of leading Labour into a ‘dark place of ugly conspiracy theories’

Marie van der Zyl, the board’s president, accused him of leading Labour into a ‘dark place of ugly conspiracy theories’

As the Labour crisis deepened, one MP accused Mr Corbyn of not being fit to be leader after the party started disciplinary action against him.

Ian Austin, the adopted child of Jewish refugees, was sent a disciplinary letter after rowing with Labour chairman Ian Lavery over its failure to properly tackle anti-Semitism in the party. Mr Austin hit back yesterday, saying Mr Corbyn had spent his whole career on the ‘extreme fringes’ defending anti-Semites.

It came as a video emerged of the Labour leader blaming an Islamist terror attack in Egypt on the ‘hand of Israel’ in 2012. The Campaign Against Anti-Semitism put in a complaint to the Labour Party about the comment.

The MP, Ian Austin (pictured) a former No 10 aide to Gordon Brown, has been warned he could be kicked out of the party after a slanging match with Labour chairman Ian Lavery

The MP, Ian Austin (pictured) a former No 10 aide to Gordon Brown, has been warned he could be kicked out of the party after a slanging match with Labour chairman Ian Lavery

And Labour MP Luciana Berger, who is Jewish, attacked an anti-Semitic tweet saying Jewish people can leave the UK if Mr Corbyn becomes Prime Minister.

A Twitter user called Peter Arif wrote: ‘When JC wins next GE if Jewish people aren’t happy they will be welcome to leave the UK.’

Ms Berger said the remark was ‘unpleasant and nasty’ and it would ‘keep me awake at night’.

The threat against Mr Austin comes a week after the party launched a disciplinary inquiry into Labour veteran Margaret Hodge for rowing with Mr Corbyn and calling him an anti-Semite.

The two MPs were angry with Labour refusing to adopt the full definition of anti-Semitism as laid down by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.

Last week the UK’s three main Jewish newspapers united to publish the same front page, warning that a Corbyn-led government would pose an ‘existential threat to Jewish life’. In a statement, Mrs van der Zyl said: ‘Even by Labour’s low standards, the last few days since the unprecedented joint banner headline by our community’s leading newspapers have been utterly shameful.

‘One Labour councillor has been suspended for saying that Jews drink blood; another has blamed Mossad for Jeremy Corbyn’s self-inflicted poll woes.

‘A video has emerged of Jeremy Corbyn himself indulging in conspiracy theories about Israel being behind terrorism in Egypt on the Iranian regime’s propaganda station Press TV.

‘Disciplinary action has been taken against two MPs who have expressed frustration about the party’s approach to anti-Semitism, while the party machine cannot seem to stir itself to take any action on egregious longstanding complaints of racism.’

…and he faces call to lose his beloved allotment 

By Mario Ledwith for the Daily Mail

The storm over anti-Semitism in Labour has turned even dirtier – with a call for Jeremy Corbyn to be thrown off his beloved allotment.

It has emerged that the leader of Barnet Council in north London, where Mr Corbyn has cultivated fruit and vegetables for many years, has suggested the punishment is doled out for the Labour leader’s failure to tackle the crisis.

Although Mr Corbyn lives in neighbouring Islington, which he also represents in Parliament, his thriving and well-tended allotment is located within the Conservative-controlled borough of Barnet, which also has one of the largest Jewish populations in the country.

Council leader Richard Cornelius raised question marks about the allotment following Mr Corbyn’s clash with veteran Labour MP Margaret Hodge, who called him a ‘racist and anti-Semite’.

The borough found itself at the centre of the anti-Semitism row earlier this year when senior Labour figures blamed it for their failure to topple the Tories at the local council elections, and Mr Corbyn cancelled a planned visit.

The threat to his allotment came after Barnet councillor John Marshall, a former Tory MP, said that Mr Corbyn should be invited to Barnet to discuss ‘the scourge of anti-Semitism, in the interests of community cohesion and wellbeing’. According to council minutes seen by The Mail on Sunday, Mr Cornelius added: ‘This would be helpful. Margaret Hodge MP has labelled Jeremy Corbyn an anti-Semite. I wonder whether he should still have a Barnet allotment.’

Barnet’s deputy leader, Daniel Thomas, told the paper: ‘The council leader is right to question whether Mr Corbyn should have an allotment in Barnet.

‘He doesn’t even live here and his inaction on anti-Semitism offends many Barnet residents.’

Barnet Council, however, does not run the 45 allotments in the borough, with the land instead leased to a collection of allotment societies for a peppercorn rent.

Each allotment society is responsible for issues relating to its individual holders, including any complaints and the allocation of its plots. East Finchley Allotments, which administers Mr Corbyn’s.

She added: ‘Jeremy Corbyn is leading the Labour Party into a dark place of ugly conspiracy theories and it has become a home for overt anti-Semites and anti-Semitism. In 2018, Labour is not only a party with extravagant levels of tolerance for anti-Semitism but one which deliberately obstructs measures to counter hatred and punishes those who speak out against it.

‘Jeremy Corbyn needs to lead Labour out of this deep abyss and urgently demonstrate to the world Labour can return to being an anti-racist party.’

Mr Austin is facing possible suspension after a public row with the party’s chairman Mr Lavery.

The MP for Dudley North said it was a ‘heated discussion’ about how the party tackles anti-Semitism. But he denied he had been ‘screaming’ abuse. Mr Austin told Radio 4 that he could not support Mr Corbyn as leader because he had spent his political career in the ‘extreme fringes’ of the party, ‘supporting and defending all sorts of extremists and in some cases, frankly, anti-Semites.’

‘That’s why I think now that somebody with views and history like his isn’t really suited to the leadership of a mainstream political party,’ he said.

‘Am I upset about anti-Semitism? Yes I am. And I’m upset as well about the leadership’s failure, I think refusal really, to deal with this properly. I grew up listening to my dad tell me how he’d escaped from the Holocaust and how his mum and sisters were murdered.

‘That led to me joining the Labour Party as a teenager determined to fight racism.’

In the 2012 interview with Press TV, an Iranian channel banned from operating in the UK, Mr Corbyn was asked about an Islamist terrorist attack in which 16 Egyptian police officers were killed. He said: ‘In whose interests is it to destabilise the new government in Egypt? In whose interest is it to kill Egyptians, other than Israel, concerned at the growing closeness of relationship between Palestine and the new Egyptian government?’

Mr Corbyn then added: ‘I suspect the hand of Israel in this whole process of destabilisation.’

The Campaign Against Anti-Semitism said it was making a disciplinary complaint about the matter to the Labour Party.

Last night a Labour spokesman said: ‘Jeremy Corbyn has made clear he is a militant opponent of anti-Semitism and is absolutely committed to tackling it.’

On Mr Austin, he said the MP had been sent a warning letter in response to a complaint about his conduct towards Mr Lavery.

He said: ‘The Labour Party takes all complaints extremely seriously. These are fully investigated in line with party rules and procedures.’

On the comments on Egypt, he said: ‘Jeremy’s speculation about the perpetrators of attacks on Egyptian border guards was based on previous well documented incidents of killings of Egyptian forces by the Israeli military.’