Chief Rabbi brands Jeremy Corbyn as 'unfit for high office’

An attendee holds a copy of the Conservative Party manifesto at its launch in Telford on Sunday

An attendee holds a copy of the Conservative Party manifesto at its launch in Telford on Sunday Credit Hollie Adams Bloomberg

Nine of Corbyn's lawmakers quit the party in February, citing the leadership's handling of the anti-Semitism accusations among their reasons, and in May Britain's equality watchdog launched an investigation into possible discrimination by Labour.

The Chief Rabbi has criticised Jeremy Corbyn, saying the "soul of the nation is at stake" in the upcoming General Election.

A Labour spokesman said: 'Jeremy Corbyn is a lifelong campaigner against anti-Semitism and has made absolutely clear it has no place in our party and society and that no-one who engages in it does so in his name.

He said the response of the party's leadership as their supporters drove politicians, members and staff out of the party for challenging anti-Jewish racism had been "utterly inadequate", and claimed the party was doing everything it could and had investigated every case were "mendacious fiction".

Under Corbyn, the party has been hit by a series of antisemitism scandals, and the leader himself has come under scrutiny for his history of sharing speaking platforms with supporters of Hamas and Hezbollah.

In a speech at the presentation of Labour's "race and faith" manifesto, Corbyn strongly condemned anti-Semitism in any form.

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Alfred Dubs, who escaped from the Nazis in Czechoslovakia as a child in 1939, said the rabbi had gone a bit far.

"It is a failure of leadership".

"There is no place whatsoever for anti-Semitism in any shape or form or in any place whatsoever in modern Britain, and under a Labour government it will not be tolerated in any form whatsoever", he said.

"That the Chief Rabbi should be compelled to make such an unprecedented statement at this time ought to alert us to the deep sense of insecurity and fear felt by many British Jews", he said.

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis claimed "a new poison - sanctioned from the very top - has taken root" in Labour.

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, in an article in The Times, questioned how complicit in prejudice an opposition leader would have to be to be considered unfit for office.

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He was backed by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, who said his intervention reflected the alarm felt by many in the Jewish community. "What starts with the Jews never ends with the Jews".

'When December 12 arrives, I ask every person to vote with their conscience.

Chancellor Sajid Javid, said he was "very saddened" by the Chief Rabbi's comments.

"Two out of our current four Labour MPs for Leeds are Jewish: the MP for North East Leeds, Fabian Hamilton, is the shadow minister for peace and worldwide relations and the MP for North West Leeds, Alex Sobel, has a proud record of promoting of co-operative relationships and enterprise".

Such an intervention from a religious leader is unusual.

'A Labour govt will guarantee the safety of the Jewish neighborhood, protect and enhance the Jewish technique of lifestyles, and fight rising anti-Semitism in our nation and across Europe.

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