'Day of shame': UK Labour Party suspends Corbyn over anti-Semitism

Jeremy Corbyn suspended from Labour party

Keir Starmer: Labour’s anti-Semitism ‘day of shame’

Britain's opposition Labour Party has suspended former leader Jeremy Corbyn for comments he made after the release of a report into anti-semitism in the party.

Jeremy Corbyn was suspended from the Labour Party today, a party spokesman has announced, as the country learned the results of the ECHR investigation on antisemitism.

The party added it had removed the Labour whip from Mr Corbyn, meaning that the former leader will no longer be able to take part in House of Commons votes as a Labour parliamentarian.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission found "significant failings" and a "lack of leadership" in how the left-of-center party handled allegations of anti-Semitism among its members.

He said: "If, after all the pain, all the grief, and all the evidence in this report, there are still those who think there's no problem with anti-semitism in the Labour party, that it's all exaggerated, or a factional attack, then frankly you are part of the problem too and you should be nowhere near the Labour party either".

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Reacting to the report, Corbyn admitted that the existence of antisemitism in the Labour Party, "as there is throughout society", but said that the scale of the problem was overstated for political reasons.

The commission said that under Corbyn, Labour was guilty of three breaches of Britain's 2010 Equality Act for political interference in complaints, failure to provide adequate training to those handling anti-Semitism cases and harassment of complainants.

"I've made absolutely clear those who deny there has been an antisemitism problem in the Labour Party are wrong", the former Labour leader said.

Corbyn has played down the report's conclusions, suggesting that anti-Semitism in Labour was no worse than in British society at large and was hyped by the media and critics. We have failed Jewish people ...

Caroline Waters, interim EHRC chair, said the investigation into Labour "highlighted multiple areas where its approach and leadership to tackling anti-Semitism was insufficient".

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But Starmer's deputy Angela Rayner, who became a leading Labour figure during the Corbyn era, told BBC Radio 4's "World At One" program, that Corbyn had a "blind spot" on anti-Semitism in the party.

Jewish leaders, including lawmakers in the Labour Party, have for years accused the party rank-and-file and grandees of using anti-Semitic language on social media and in party meetings, including smears against Jews at large and anti-Israel and anti-Zionist rhetoric often veering into outright anti-Semitism.

The EHRC found the situation to be indirectly discriminatory and unlawful as it put the person making the complaint at a disadvantage. "What happened over the past five years in the Labour Party must never be allowed to happen again". Reform was then stalled by an obstructive party bureaucracy.

Starmer has vowed to stamp out prejudice and restore relations between the party and the Jewish community. "My team acted to speed up, not hinder the process".

The party has been served with an unlawful act notice and has been given until December 10 to draft an action plan to implement the report's recommendations.

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Starmer refused to say whether he would now expel Corbyn and his allies from the party but said Labour had suffered a "collective failure of leadership".

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