Fresh Labour anti-semitism row as mayoral candidate suspended over 'Nazi' comments

Posted On: 
9th March 2019

Labour has suspended one of its top candidates for the upcoming local election after he was accused of making anti-semitic comments on social media.

Jewish groups protest against anti-semitism in the Labour party last year.
PA Images

Sean McCallum, who was due to stand to be mayor of Mansfield in May, claimed "Nazism and Zionism are equally foul”.

The Labour councillor also reposted a claim that Israel should be "relocated into the United States".

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Following Ken Livingstone’s suspension over his comments regarding Adolf Hitler and Zionism, Mr McCallum posted on his personal Facebook page:  “All makes perfect sense. I can’t see anything vaguely antisemitic here.”

A Labour spokesperson said: “The Labour Party takes all complaints of anti-semitism extremely seriously and we are committed to challenging and campaigning against it in all its forms. All complaints about antisemitism are fully investigated in line with our rules and procedures and any appropriate disciplinary action is taken.”

The latest incident came as it emerged that Lord Falconer said he would not seek to lead an investigation into anti-semitism in Labour if the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) begins its own official inquiry.

Lord Falconer told the Jewish News:  “In light of the commission coming in, I think we’ve got to put it on hold, see what the commission is going to do. If they are minded to do an investigation, they will have a range of statutory powers to get documents, emails, WhatsApp messages and witnesses, and they will do an investigation that will be completely independent from the Labour Party.”

In a letter to Jeremy Corbyn on Friday, Labour peers condemned anti-semitism in the party as an “embarrassing and hugely damaging mess”.

They said that the ECHR's announcement it could launch a probe into the party was “humiliating and a matter of great shame”.