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What do we know about the accusations of anti-Semitism against Jeremy Corbyn, supporter of Nupes?

After tormenting the British left for a long time, accusations of anti-Semitism against Jeremy Corbyn are resurfacing in the French legislative campaign. The former leader of the Labor Party between 2015 and 2020 was received this Saturday June 4 by Danièle Obono and Danielle Simonnet, candidates for Nupes in the north of Paris. A meeting which strongly reacted to their competitors and the Licra, the International League against Racism and Anti-Semitism.

The outgoing MP for the 15th constituency of Paris, Lamia El Aaraje (PS), who did not receive the Nupes nomination and is therefore facing Danielle Simonnet (LFI) attacked the latter: “The masks are falling: inviting and displaying the support of Jeremy Corbyn, dismissed from the Labor Party and the group for complacency with anti-Semitism in England, after 1,000 complaints recorded by this party, is a shame of which Danielle Simonnet is proud “, she tweeted.

” Shame on you “replied Danielle Simonnet, whose party strongly supports the former Labor leader. “Jeremy Corbyn never made a single anti-Semitic remark but was the victim of a gross manipulation because he embodied the left wing. Labor had to apologize and reinstate him. There are enough real anti-Semites to fight to invent others,” she continued.

If he suspended him for a few weeks, Labor has not yet officially apologized to Jeremy Corbyn. On the contrary, it was he who apologized for the anti-Semitism that took place within his training. In 2019, the Labor party revealed that it had received more than 1,000 reports of anti-Semitism, of which a third were, however, aimed at people who were not members.

Covered by a report

During his tenure at the head of Labour, Jeremy Corbyn was accused by part of his camp and by religious organizations of complacency vis-à-vis the anti-Semitic remarks of certain members of his party. Despite the establishment of an internal system to sanction the abuses and the exclusion of several members, this supporter of a radical and pro-Palestinian left has not managed to resolve this crisis, according to an investigation carried out by an organization independent, the Equality and Human Rights Commission. In October 2020, shortly after the end of his mandate, this 130-page report estimated that under his leadership, Labor had made itself responsible for failures “inexcusable” resulting from a “lack of will to tackle anti-Semitism”.

READ ALSO: Suspension of Jeremy Corbyn: “Labour demands a clear line on the condemnation of anti-Semitism”

After the publication of the report of the Commission for Equality and Human Rights, Jeremy Corbyn was suspended for several weeks by the new leadership of the Labor Party for his reaction, deemed inappropriate, to the conclusions of the investigation. The former leader believed that anti-Semitism was “absolutely disgusting” but added that “The scale of the problem has also been dramatically exaggerated for political reasons by our opponents inside and outside the party, as well as by much of the media.”

“Multiple failures”

However, this investigation identified “serious leadership shortcomings and a lack of antisemitism complaints process within the Labor Party ». And we have identified multiple failures in the systems it uses to address them.”also noted the Commission for Equality and Human Rights, which considered that the Labor Party had committed acts in violation of British law against discrimination.

READ ALSO: Jeremy Corbyn: Labor plagued by anti-Semitism

This report notably targeted remarks made by Ken Livingstone, former mayor of London and close to Corbyn, who had told the BBC that Hitler had supported Zionism. “before going mad and ending up killing 6 million Jews”. Ken Livingstone was trying to defend against the “Israeli Lobby” MK Naz Shah, herself singled out for two social media posts in 2014. One suggested the dismantling of Israel, the other seemed to compare Israeli politics to Hitler’s. Suspended in 2016, Ken Livingstone resigned from the Labor Party in 2018. A period deemed too long by critics of Jeremy Corbyn, who demanded the exclusion of the former mayor of London.

Antisemitic fresco

Several controversies have also erupted in the British press around the positions taken by Jeremy Corbyn. In March 2018, the septuagenarian thus apologized for having opposed in 2012 the destruction of a fresco representing Jewish bankers playing on a Monopoly table placed on the backs of workers. In August 2018, the DailyMail also accused him of having participated in Tunis in 2014 in a ceremony of homage to the Palestinian terrorists of the Black September group, responsible for the taking of hostages and the assassination of eleven Israeli athletes during the Munich Olympics in 1972 .

Invited for a conference by the Tunisian president, Jeremy Corbyn appeared in photos, a wreath in his hand, without it being known if he had indeed placed it on the tomb of the elders of Black September. This ceremony also paid tribute to the 47 Palestinians killed in 1985 in the bombing of the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization) headquarters in Tunis, considered by the UN Security Council as a “armed act of aggression”. Binyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli Prime Minister at the time, seized on it to call for a “unequivocal condemnation” of the Labor leader. The latter admitted having been present without “to have been involved”.

Internal struggles

These controversies are concomitant with internal struggles within Labour. Historical opponent of the liberal turn made during the Tony Blair era, Jeremy Corbyn intended to impose a radical left line on the party, arousing strong internal opposition. While he managed to attract a large following, Corbyn suffered a severe defeat in the 2019 general election, where Labor lost 60 seats and Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party won an outright majority.

READ ALSO: Shunned by the working classes, torn apart by internal struggles, English Labor elect a new leader

In the process, the centrist fringe led by Keir Starmer took power within the Labor Party. Since then, Corbyn supporters have denounced a purge. Among them, filmmaker Ken Loach announced that he had been expelled from the Party in August 2021: “The Labor leadership has finally decided that I am not fit to be a member of their party because I do not want to disavow those who have already been excluded” he explained on Twitter.

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