UK Labour reinstates lawmaker suspended over anti-Semitism

Key ally of Jeremy Corbyn, who was suspended for saying Labour is “too apologetic” over anti-Semitism, has been readmitted.

Ben Ariel ,

Chris Williamson with Jeremy Corbyn
Chris Williamson with Jeremy Corbyn

A key ally of British Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn who was suspended from the party for saying it is “too apologetic” over anti-Semitism has been readmitted, JTA reported on Wednesday.

A party ethics panel warned the lawmaker, Chris Williamson, for saying earlier this year that when it comes to Labour’s anti-Semitism problem, its deniers “have backed off too much, we have given too much ground, we have been too apologetic.”

Labour suspended Williamson in February pending an ethics review.

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

Corbyn himself has been accused of holding anti-Semitic views by senior UK Jewish leaders. Corbyn has also been criticized for 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.

Much of the criticism against Corbyn is over his playing down the anti-Semitism in his party and alienating Jews. A report released in October of 2016 determined that the Labour party’s leadership is failing to seriously confront the anti-Semitism among its ranks.

Corbyn insists he is not an anti-Semite. In an interview with the BBC in September of 2018 he described anti-Semitism “as a scourge in any society, I have opposed it all my life…I have spent my whole life opposing racism in any form and I will die fighting racism."

The United Kingdom’s Equality and Human Rights Commission recently officially launched an investigation into Labour’s anti-Semitism problem.