Jeremy Corbyn refuses to apologise to Jewish community over Labour anti-semitism

Posted On: 
26th November 2019

Jeremy Corbyn has refused to apologise to the Jewish community for the rise of anti-semitism in the Labour party.

Jeremy Corbyn at the launch of Labour's race and faith manifesto.
PA Images

The Labour leader was given the opportunity to say sorry four times while being interviewed by the BBC's Andrew Neil.

However, he repeatedly failed to do so, insisting instead that he was opposed to "all forms of racism".

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The clash came on the same day that Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis said that Mr Corbyn was "unfit for high office" over his failure to tackle anti-Jewish racism in his party.

Asked if he wanted to apologise to Britain's Jews, Mr Corbyn said: "What I’ll say is this. I am determined that our society will be safe for people of all faiths. I don’t want anyone to be feeling insecure in our society and our government will protect every community."

The Labour leader said racism was "a total poison", but did not say he was sorry.

He added: "Be it Islamophobia, anti-semitism or any other form of racism ... I want to work with every community to make sure it’s eliminated. That is what my whole life has been about."

Elsewhere in the half-hour interview, Mr Corbyn also acknowledged that some people earning less than £80,000 a year would pay more tax under Labour, despite the party's election manifesto claiming they would not.

He confirmed that scrapping the marriage allowance would cost couples currently receiving it £250 a year, while a tax on share dividends would also hit pensioners relying on that for their income after they retire.

Mr Corbyn said: "It’s a graded tax, so that would be – that – is reasonable and fair to do."