A senior member of the British Labour Party has apologized for anti-Semitic comments online prior to his current position.

Lloyd Russell-Moyle, 33, a shadow environment minister, made the remarks before becoming a member of Parliament in 2017, reported the London-based Sunday Times.

In a now-deleted post, he wrote, “The point is people who are from Jewish decent/Jewish but are not Zionist is that the two are not automatic that you can be proud of being Jewish but realize that idea of inheriting/claim a land that you may have never visited or seen but have a ‘heritage’ claim for is not progressive in its very nature.”

In another, he compared Israel to South Africa during the days of apartheid.

“Terrorism feeds of violence,” he wrote. “That is why it is only Israel that can stop the violence, it was the National Party in South Africa that had to make the first steps.”

In a statement on Sunday, Russell-Moyle apologized. “I have now deleted these posts and recognize why they were offensive,” he said.

“I am completely and unreservedly committed to supporting [Labour leader] Keir Starmer and [deputy leader] Angela Rayner’s pledge to rid the party of anti-Semitism,” he added. “I have met previously with the Jewish Labour Movement and will be reaching out to them again now.”

The Jewish Labour Movement, however, said it has not had formal contact with Russell-Moyle since the 2017 election, reported the U.K.-based Jewish News.

“Lloyd Russell-Moyle has, in his short time in Parliament, managed to attract constant controversy in relation to anti-Semitism, which has caused deep upset and distress within the Jewish community in Brighton and Hove,” according to a JLM statement on Sunday.

“In isolation, each event would have at best pointed to a blind spot on anti-Jewish racism,” said JLM. “Taken together they appear to be a pattern of behaviour that is simply not acceptable for a front bench member of the Parliamentary Labour Party.”

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