Connect with us

Politics

Labour split after Jeremy Corbyn suspended



The left of British politics was left reeling Thursday after what was described by current party leader Keir Starmer as a “day of shame.”

Jeremy Corbyn, who led Labour for five years until earlier this year, was suspended from the party due to his response to a report published Thursday by the national equality and human rights watchdog into anti-Semitism in the party.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission report released Thursday found Labour responsible for unlawful acts of harassment and discrimination over anti-Semitism, and cited “serious failings” in the response from Corbyn’s office to the crisis and its process for handling complaints.

The current Labour leader Keir Starmer said the report’s conclusions were “clear and stark” and revealed “serious failings in leadership, processes and culture.” After he replaced Corbyn in April this year, Starmer pledged to address Labour’s anti-Semitism problem and apologized to the U.K.’s Jewish community for “failing” them on the issue.

His response to the publication of the report is seen as a major test of his pledge to rebuild Labour’s relationship with the community, after it largely broke down during Corbyn’s leadership. One poll, conducted by Survation for the Jewish Chronicle in 2018, revealed that more than 85 percent of British Jews regarded Corbyn as anti-Semitic.

Speaking shortly after the report‘s publication, Corbyn acknowledged the existence of anti-Semitism in Labour and admitted the leadership could have done more. He also said that “the scale of the problem” had been “dramatically overstated” by political opponents and the media.

The party issued a statement after Corbyn’s remarks announcing his suspension, saying: “In light of his comments made today and his failure to retract them subsequently, the Labour Party has suspended Jeremy Corbyn pending investigation. He has also had the whip removed [been suspended] from the parliamentary Labour Party.”

Speaking to POLITICO later Thursday, the party’s Shadow Foreign Secretary Lisa Nandy said the suspension was the “right thing to do.” Nandy said she wasn’t surprised by the decision and supports the action taken against her former boss.

“It was clear from the reaction to Jeremy’s comments earlier in the day that there would be complaints made about him, it was very clear the party would have to take those seriously and that’s why I support the decision that’s been taken.”

“I don’t want to prejudge the outcome of the investigation, but it was the right thing to do in my view,” she said.

While the move has infuriated Corbyn-supporting Labour members who are threatening to quit, most Brits agree with Nandy. A snap YouGov poll found that a majority — 58 per cent — of respondents think suspending Corbyn was the right decision. Just 13 percent think it was the wrong.

Voters that backed Labour in the last election agree with Nandy too, with 41 percent backing suspension as opposed to 26 percent opposed.

Asked if she herself believes Corbyn is anti-Semitic, Nandy said she doesn’t know, despite being on “good terms” and having at times “exchanged texts” with the former leader since taking on her foreign affairs-focused shadow Cabinet role.

“I don’t know, is the honest answer … before he was elected leader I would have said that he doesn’t have an anti-Semitic or racist bone in his body,” she said. “But I have watched with absolute disbelief over the last few years what I believe to be not just a failure to deal with anti-Semitism but an unwillingness on many occasions to deal with anti-Semitism.”

Some supporters of Corbyn — who remains a source of inspiration for many on the British left — have accused new leader Keir Starmer of involving himself in the complaints process in order to suspend his predecessor. One of the EHRC report’s strongest criticisms on the party was that Corbyn’s office had been responsible for “political interference” in the complaints process during his time as Labour leader.

Corbyn himself has said he will “strongly contest the political intervention” that he feels led to his suspension, in a Facebook post that garnered tens of thousands of likes from his still-committed supporters.

Nandy rejected the accusation, telling POLITICO “it is wrong and hurtful” to suggest Corbyn’s suspension was a political act by Starmer.

“I am absolutely clear, because I have been assured from every level of the party, that Keir was not involved in that decision — it was a decision taken by the Labour Party. It is one he fully supports and he was briefed on it by the general secretary.”

“I can tell you having just been at shadow Cabinet that is not something that anybody took any pleasure in, least of all Keir. I couldn’t see any reaction on people’s faces to that except absolute sadness that it has come to this.”

She added: “What we are not going to do is begin the process of trying to regain trust, healing and setting right what this party has got badly wrong over recent years by breaking and rejecting the key recommendation of the EHRC report — which is that there should be no political interference in decisions that are made.”

On whether Labour could repair its relationship with the Jewish community, Nandy said it was too early to say but that she wouldn’t rest until Labour and anti-Semitism “are not heard in the same sentence.”

Referring to former MPs that left the party in part due to anti-Semitic abuse from members, she said: “When people like Louise Ellman and Luciana [Berger] who were forced out of the party due to anti-Semitism come back — that will be the moment where we feel we have started to make progress.”



Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Providence
54°
Showers in the Vicinity
6:47am4:18pm EST
Feels like: 52°F
Wind: 7mph SW
Humidity: 73%
Pressure: 30.25"Hg
UV index: 0
ThuFriSat
61/45°F
61/39°F
54/34°F
Advertisement

Top News cnn