‘This is a question of LEADERSHIP’ Corbyn blasted as answers demanded over anti-Semitism

Posted on Mar 28 2018 - 9:38am by admin

Tory MP Sajid Javid said the “question of leadership” was part of the problem after it emerged Mr Corbyn had questioned the planned removal of an anti-Semitic mural.

In a strongly-worded rant, the Communities Minister questioned how “someone in a position of leadership” could be “so often in close proximity to those who promote the world’s oldest hatred”.

Mr Javid said: “It is a question of leadership. In fact, the first chapter of the Government’s new Integrated Communities Strategy focuses on the need for exactly that – at all levels of society.

“We didn’t anticipate leadership being part of the problem at such a high level, but as they say: the culture of an organisation starts at the top.

“Jeremy Corbyn’s defence of his mural comments talks about ‘pockets’ of anti-Semitism in his party, as if they are some rogue revolutionaries hiding out in the hills. They’re not.

“How can someone in a position of leadership in this country find themselves so often in close proximity to those who promote the world’s oldest hatred. That’s a question for him to answer.”

His comments come after hundreds descended onto Parliament on Monday evening to protest against Mr Corbyn over claims the Labour chief is not going enough to deal with allegations of anti-Semitism.

Writing for The Telegraph, Mr Javid said “enough is enough”.

He said: “It’s a sad day when British jews feel they have to come to Westminster to make a stand against prejudices they are facing here in 21st century Britain.

“Sadly, a worrying culture has been allowed to develop in one of our major parties and it cannot be ignored any longer.

“Not only does this cause understandable anxiety for the Jewish community, and give succour to the tiny minority of bigots who share these views, but it also tars the tolerant majority of the Labour Party. Enough is enough.”

Mr Corbyn has said he wants to meet Jewish groups to hear about their concerns and has pledged to “redouble” his efforts to tackle the issue.

The latest row was triggered by a Facebook comment from 2012 when Mr Corbyn offered a show of support for the painter of a mural at the centre of an anti-Semitism row whose controversial street art was about to be painted over.

Mr Corbyn later said he sincerely regretted not looking properly at the “deeply disturbing and anti-Semitic” picture before telling artist Mear One he was in “good company” among artists who had work removed.

Mr Javid added: “For our part, as a Government with the responsibility of leadership, we are absolutely determined to make sure that anti-Semitism is never tolerated in this country.

“Our national strategy for tackling hate crime recognises the importance of dealing with abuse specifically targeted at Jews.”

Mr Corbyn has written to both The Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Jewish Leadership Council to apologise for the “pain and hurt” caused by instances of anti-Semitism in his party.

He said: “I recognise that anti-Semitism has surfaced within the Labour Party, and has too often been dismissed as simply a matter of a few bad apples.

“This has caused pain and hurt to Jewish members of our party and to the wider Jewish community in Britain. I am sincerely sorry for the pain which has been caused, and pledge to redouble my efforts to bring this anxiety to an end.

“I must make it clear that I will never be anything other than a militant opponent of anti-Semitism.”

Express.co.uk contacted Labour for comment, who said: “Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Labour Party, has written to the Board of Deputies and the Jewish Leadership Council in response to their statement yesterday, pledging that he

is a “militant opponent of antisemitism” and an ally in the fight against it.

“In the letter, Jeremy Corbyn recognises that antisemitism has surfaced within the Labour Party and identifies particular forms of antisemitism, which he labels ‘the socialism of fools’. He apologies for the ‘pain and hurt to Jewish members of our Party and to the wider Jewish community in Britain’ caused by instances of antisemitism in the Labour Party and personally for wrongly questioning the removal of an antisemitic mural in 2012.

“He pledges that Labour will have zero tolerance for antisemites and will bring forward a programme of political education within the party “to increase awareness and understanding of all forms of antisemitism.

“In the letter, Jeremy Corbyn also repeats his offer on an urgent meeting with the Board of Deputies and the Jewish Leadership Council as soon as possible.” 

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