Dozens of Twitter accounts fuelling problem of anti-semitism in Labour party, researchers say
Dozens of pro-Labour and pro-Corbyn Twitter accounts are being used to reject anti-semitism allegations against the party, researchers have found.
Researchers that 36 key accounts were flagged for pushing out content dismissing claims of anti-semitism within the party as “exaggerated, weaponised, invented or blown out of proportion” over four years.
The research, conducted by charity Community Service Trust (CST), also found a third of the accounts had themselves tweeted anti-semitic content.
The report titled “Engine of hate, the online networks behind the Labour party’s anti-semitism crisis” revealed the networks had used hashtag campaigns to attack MPs and public figures who had hit out publicly at the party over concerns about anti-semitism.
They included #BoycottRachelRiley and #SackTomWatson.
Labour’s deputy party leader Mr Watson told the Observer: “This report points to a deeply troubling online culture where antisemitic narratives have been allowed to take root.
“I hope this intelligence is shared with the investigators at Labour HQ so that they can explain to the dominant faction that control our party’s national executive how a small group of prolific social media users can influence our internal discussions if they are not called out or dealt with swiftly.”
A CST spokesman added: “These are Labour’s social media cheerleaders.
“Our report reveals how they set the tone and drive the vitriol on social media, attacking anyone who criticises the party’s appalling failure to deal with its antisemitism problem.”
The charity also discovered a number of those who were behind the accounts had apologised for their actions and helped educate others on anti-semitism.
A Labour party spokeswoman said: “A small number of accounts are identified, some of which are not Labour members or supporters, and others have been expelled or suspended.
“The analysis does not look at pro-Labour social media as a whole, and therefore does not include the main Labour-supporting accounts that actively call out such bigotry. We stand in solidarity with Jewish communities, and are committed to rooting out antisemitism from our party and wider society.”
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