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UK’s Labour suspends members as antisemitism scandal widens

 

(JNS.org) A British Member of Parliament (MP) who suggested that Israel should be relocated to the United States as a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been suspended by the United Kingdom’s Labour Party. Labour MP Naz Shah had already quit her role in the U.K.’s “shadow cabinet” (the parliamentary opposition’s alternative cabinet to that of the ruling coalition government) over the controversy. She apologized for a 2014 Facebook post that included an image of Israel superimposed on a U.S. map, with the comment “solution for the Israel-Palestine conflict.” The Guido Fawkes political website was the first outlet to report on the post. “Problem solved and save u bank charges for £3 BILLION you transfer yearly!” Shah wrote in the Facebook post. The post gives a list of reasons for why Israel’s “relocation” plan would be beneficial, such as Palestinians getting “their land and life back.”

Additionally, London’s Jewish Chronicle on Tuesday cited antisemitic posts Shah made on Twitter in 2014, alluding that Jews rule the government. Shah is a member of the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee, which is currently investigating the rise of antisemitism in the U.K.

The Guido Fawkes website also reported that Shah’s parliamentary aide, Mohammad Shabbir, has used an offensive term for Zionist, “Zio,” on Twitter. He has also posted that Orthodox Jews “are involved in the sex trafficking trade,” has compared Zionists to the Al-Qaeda terror group, has called Israel “a ‘terror’ and ‘apartheid’ state,” and has equated the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to the Holocaust. Shabbir was suspended from the Labour Party in the wake of these revelations, prior to the suspension of Shah.

Next, on May 2, the Labour Party suspended Ilyas Aziz, a city councilman for Nottingham in north-central England, hours after the Guido Fawkes website posted screenshots of several of his Facebook posts, including one from 2014 calling for the relocation of Israeli Jews to the U.S., as well as a post comparing Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians to the Nazi’s treatment of Jews, another perpetuating the blood libel myth that reads “Stop drinking Gaza’s blood,” and yet another showing an Israeli flag with the words “God didn’t give you the land – the UK did … Illegally” superimposed on it.
In addition, on April 28, the party suspended former London Mayor Ken Livingstone for saying that Adolf Hitler was a Zionist for advocating in 1932 a policy of moving Europe’s Jews to Israel.
The following day, the party said it would launch an investigation into antisemitism in the party. Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn – who in the past has referred to the terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah as his “friends” — also said in a statement that he would propose a new party code of conduct, which would “make explicitly clear for the first time that Labour will not tolerate any form of racism, including antisemitism, in the party.”
The latest suspension comes days before local elections, including for mayor of London, in a race that Labour’s candidate, Sadiq Kahn, is favored to win, which would make him the first Muslim mayor of a major Western city. He is running against Conservative Party candidate Zac Goldsmith.

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