John Mann warns of 'almighty row' if Corbyn fails to act on anti-Semitism

Posted On: 
13th March 2016
Labour MP John Mann has told Jeremy Corbyn he must take “decisive action” to tackle anti-Semitism within the party.

Labour has launched an inquiry after the co-chair of Oxford University Labour Club quit over the decision to endorse ‘Israel Apartheid Week’, and listed a number of alleged anti-Semitic incidents as he resigned.

Mr Mann, who chairs the All Party Parliamentary Group on Anti-Semitism, said there was “of course” a problem that had “crept into” Labour.



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Open letter from former members Oxford University Labour Club


“It’s not a big problem. But a small problem when it comes to racism needs to be dealt with,” he told the BBC’s Sunday Politics .

“People have obviously chosen to associate with the Labour party in the growth of membership; some of those people have attitudes that are very outdated, that are prejudiced. There’s no space for them in the Labour party.”

He said anti-racism campaigners in Labour would accept nothing less than the “highest of standards” within their own party, and forecast an “almighty row” if the review into OULC did not lead to concrete action from Mr Corbyn.

“I’ve met Jeremy recently to discuss anti-Semitism and the Labour party and it’s clear to me that he does not tolerate or support it. 

"But what he has to do is follow that through with actions and ensure that others in the Labour party follow it through with actions because the atmosphere that’s been created at Oxford University is not a one-off; this has been happening elsewhere as well...

“We’re not prepared to have that in the Labour party. There has to be action. It has to be led from the front and it has to be decisive action. There’s no space for these people, these intolerant anti-Semites in the Labour party, nor is there space for people in any way excusing their actions.”

Baroness Royall, the former Leader of the House of Lords, is heading the review for Labour.

The alleged comments and conduct at OULC led to an open letter from more than two dozen former chairs or committee members to condemn the group’s current direction.