UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Britain’s chief rabbi Ephraim Murphs intervened in an election campaign on Tuesday, directly criticizing Labor Party leader Jeremy Corbin, who accused him of failing to prevent the spread of anti-Semitism in his party.
This unusual intervention by a cleric has cast a shadow over the Labor Party’s special program, which Corbin is to present Tuesday to strengthen anti-discrimination if he wins the December 12 election.
“The way the (Labor) racist leadership has dealt with the Jews is incompatible with the British values of which we are proud: dignity and respect for all,” the chief rabbi wrote in an article in The Times.
“A new poison, with the consent of the leadership, permeates the Labor Party,” which makes UK Jews “worried,” he said.
“When the time comes for December 12, I will ask everyone to vote according to their conscience. Undoubtedly, the spirit of our nation is at stake,” he said, adding that Corbin was “incapable” of governing.
The anti-discrimination program in particular pledges to force companies to publish statistics on wage differentials affecting blacks, Asians and ethnic minorities.
Corbin is regularly accused of courtesy members of his party who have spoken out against anti-Semitism, accusations that have emerged strongly in the election campaign and prompted many lawmakers to stay away.
Corbin admitted in August 2018 that his party had a “real problem” related to anti-Semitism and that it was “too late” to impose disciplinary sanctions in confirmed cases, and stressed that the priority was to “regain the confidence” of British Jews.
A Labor Party spokeswoman denied the accusations by the kingdom’s chief rabbi.
“Jeremy Corbin has always been an anti-Semitic fighter and has made it clear that there is no room for this phenomenon in our party or in our society,” she said.
Efraim Mervis, who spoke of “thousands” of untreated anti-Semitism within the party, has been vehemently denied.
The party “will guarantee the security of the Jewish community, defend and support the way of life of Jews and will fight the rise of anti-Semitism in our country and in Europe,” she said.
– “False invention” –
Is Labor doing everything it can to fight anti-Semitism? The chief rabbis’ answer was no, considering what he was doing was a “false invention.”
He was joined by voices including Luciana Berger, a Jewish Liberal Democrat who left the Labor Party in February 2019, accusing him of being “anti-Semitic in his structure.”
“During a recent meeting with Jeremy Corbin at the end of 2017, I told him that many public and private groups on Facebook were stained with anti-Semitic posts using the name and image of the Labor leader. Nothing has happened since that meeting,” she said on Tuesday.
“Corbin should be ashamed,” said former Labor MP Ian Austin.
Before launching the Labor Party’s anti-racism program, Interior Minister Preeti Betel said it was “surprising that Corbin offers lessons to others on combating racial and religious discrimination at a time when his party is being investigated by the Commission for Equality and Human Rights on anti-Semitism.”
This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for OBSERVATORY NEWS from different countries around the world – material edited and published by OBSERVATORY staff in our newsroom.
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