British MEP May Face New Disciplinary Action Over 'Jew' Remarks

British MEP David Ward may face new disciplinary action over his offensive and derogatory comments about "the Jews."

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Rachel Hirshfeld,

British parliament
British parliament

British MEP David Ward may face new disciplinary action over his comments comparing Israel's treatment of the Palestinians to the Nazis' treatment of the Jews during the Holocaust.

Ward, a member of the Liberal Democrats, said on International Holocaust Memorial Day last month that he was “saddened that the Jews, who suffered unbelievable levels of persecution during the Holocaust, could, within a few years of liberation, be inflicting atrocities on the Palestinians in the new State of Israel -- and continue to do so.”

Liberal Democrat MEP Alistair Carmichael sent a letter calling on Ward to confirm that he would “not again use the phrase 'the Jews' in this context".

"I am strongly of the view that your use of the phrase 'the Jews' in this context was unacceptable and I formally censure you for that," Carmichael said at time.

While Ward apologized for the "unintended offense", the Board of Deputies of British Jews said the apology had "no credibility".

The controversy was renewed when reports emerged that Ward asked if it would placate critics if he changed the wording to read "the Jewish community.”

The party issued a statement affirming that the new comments would be "dealt with as a fresh issue."

A party spokesman said Ward was on a visit to the Netherlands with a Commons select committee but would be summoned to Carmichael’s when he returned.

"We are fully aware of the latest comments," he said.