British Labour leader called a 'liar' at Hanukkah party

Jeremy Corbyn says there's "zero tolerance" of anti-Semitism within Labour during Jewish Labour Movement’s Hanukkah party.

Ben Ariel,

Jeremy Corbyn
Jeremy Corbyn
Reuters

British Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was called a "liar" during his speech at the Jewish Labour Movement’s Hanukkah party after he said there was "zero tolerance" of anti-Semitism within the party, The Jewish Chronicle reported.

The incident took place on Wednesday night, according to the report. Corbyn was quoted as having told a crowded room at the party’s headquarters in central London, “I’m here because I want the party to be strong in all areas, I want the Jewish Labour Movement to be absolutely part of and involved with the party at all levels."

Prior to Corbyn’s speech, a plea had been made for all those in the room to treat each other in a comradely spirit. However, at this point a female heckler responded with the words, "But you hate us".

During the Labour leader's speech, the same heckler shouted, “Corbyn, you’re a liar”, before reportedly being removed from the room.

“The issues of racism in our society are serious. The issues of antisemitism are very, very serious indeed,” Corbyn had said.

“That’s why I asked Shami Chakrabarti… to undertake an investigation and a report. It’s why we have achieved by very broad consensus a rule change in the party which has gone through, and why we have an investigative process for any claims of antisemitism against anyone in the party,” he continued.

“There is zero tolerance of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party, and that is how it must remain,” he continued, to applause. However, a male heckler then shouted, “What about Ken?”

He was referring to former London Mayor Ken Livingstone, who was suspended after claiming that Nazi leader Adolf Hitler supported Zionism.

Livingstone has repeatedly refused to apologize for the comments, even after being harangued as a "racist, Hitler-apologist" by an MP from his own party.

The former London Mayor is one among dozens of Labour members who have been suspended over their anti-Semitic statements in recent years.

Corbyn himself has been criticized in the past due to his calling Hamas and Hezbollah his "friends" and for outright refusing to condemn those two terrorist organizations despite being urged to do so by local Jewish groups.

Last year, however, the Labour leader said that he regretted making those comments.

Earlier this week, Corbyn said he does not support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel, but does back targeted action against Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria.

“Jeremy is not in favor of a comprehensive or blanket boycott. He doesn’t support BDS. He does support targeted action aimed at illegal settlements and occupied territories,” said Corbyn’s spokesman when asked to clarify the Labour leader’s position after Kate Osamor, the shadow development secretary, publicly backed BDS.


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