Labour party antisemitism row continues as major donor quits and racist Facebook posts come to light

Alys Key
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Jeremy Corbyn Launches Labour's Local Government Election Campaign
Jeremy Corbyn's leadership is under increased scrutiny as more revelations come to light (Source: Getty)

A row over antisemitism in the Labour party has rolled into its second week with the discovery of a spate of pro-Corbyn Facebook groups featuring racist posts.

Labour said today that groups containing praise for Adolf Hitler and threats to kill the Prime Minister were "not connected" with the party.

It follows a report by The Sunday Times which found that 12 senior Labour staff and the shadow chancellor John McDonnell were members of groups where attacks on Jewish people, including Holocaust denial, were found to be routine.

The paper uncovered more than 2,000 racist, antisemitic, misogynistic, violent and abusive messages in the pro-Labour groups.

Read more: Corbyn’s wilful indifference let antisemitism thrive in Labour

Meanwhile Sir David Gerrard, a major private donor to Labour who has given £1.5m since 2003, told The Observer that he had left the party.

He said his decision was due to his "dismay and foreboding" over the way the party's leadership has conducted itself.

Last night, senior Labour official Christine Shawcroft announced her resignation from Labour's ruling committee after she also became engulfed in the antisemitism scandal.

It followed the revelation last week that she had opposed suspending a council candidate accused of Holocaust denial.

Her place on the NEC will be taken up by comedian Eddie Izzard.

The debacle kicked off last week when Labour MP Luciana Berger tweeted images showing that Jeremy Corbyn had opposed the removal of an anti-semitic mural in 2012.

Corbyn later issued an apology for "pockets of antisemitism" in Labour and said he regretted not looking closely at the image.

Following the incident, demonstrators took to Parliament Square on Monday to voice concern over antisemitism in the party. They were met by a crowd of Corbyn supporters who organised a counter-rally.

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