Responding to a question on anti-Semitism by Conservative MP Suella Fernandes, the Prime Minister said: “the fact that frankly we’ve got a Labour Member of Parliament with the Labour Whip who made remarks about the transportation of people from Israel to America and talked about a solution and is still in receipt of the Labour Whip is quite extraordinary”.
The Prime Minister underlined: “I think it is very simple. Anti-Semitism is effectively racism and we should call it out and fight it wherever we see it”.
He continued: “Let me just tell you what the Shadow Chancellor said about these people: ‘Out out out. If people express these views full stop, they’re out. People might be able to reform their views and the rest of it… on this, I can’t see it, I’m not having it, people might say I’ve changed my views, well do something in another organisation’. And frankly, there will be enough hours in the day until that happens to the MP in question”.
Conservative MP for Fareham, Suella Fernandes, asked the Prime Minister: “Hatred and ignorance lie at the heart of anti-Semitism and when those in public life express such views, they denigrate not only themselves but also the institutions to which they belong. Will my Rt. Hon. friend please reassure this house of his commitment to fighting this vicious form of prejudice”.
In the most high-profile incident yet of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party, it has emerged that Bradford West MP Naz Shah called for the State of Israel to be removed from the Middle East and “relocated” to the United States, in a series of social media posts and posted an article which likened Zionism to Al Qaeda.
In a Facebook post dating from 5th August 2014, uncovered by the Guido Fawkes blog and since deleted, the Labour MP shared a graphic arguing for the “transportation” of the Israeli population out of the Middle East and into the US. She claimed in the post that the “transportation costs” of deporting Israelis would be “less than 3 years of defence spending”.
In another anti-Semitic posting, Ms Shah urged people on Facebook to back suggestions Israel was “committing war crimes” in a poll in 2014 and said that “the Jews are rallying” to vote. Another report revealed that Ms Shah had made Facebook post comparing Israelis to Hitler.
Following widespread condemnation, Ms Shah resigned as Labour Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell’s PPS, and her position on the Home Affairs Select Committee is now in question. The Committee is currently investigating anti-Semitism in the UK.