(July 13, 2020 / JNS) 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.”
Support Jewish Journalism
with 2020 Vision
One of the most intriguing stories of the sudden Coronavirus crisis is the role of the internet. With individuals forced into home quarantine, most are turning further online for information, education and social interaction.
JNS's influence and readership are growing exponentially, and our positioning sets us apart. Most Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas. JNS is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.
During this crisis, JNS continues working overtime. We are being relied upon to tell the story of this crisis as it affects Israel and the global Jewish community, and explain the extraordinary political developments taking place in parallel.
Our ability to thrive in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters. Monthly donations in particular go a long way in helping us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make during these challenging times. We thank you for your ongoing support and wish you blessings for good health and peace of mind.