This is what the executive committee of Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party said today
Following the recent reports of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party and the growing number of attacks on Jewish community around Europe we want to reiterate that as your local Labour Party Executive Committee we unreservedly condemn anti-Semitism. We support the leadership of our party in setting up a national enquiry on this issue and taking the strongest possible action against anyone found guilty of it.
Revisionist ‘history’, which effectively denies the Holocaust or makes links between the Nazi regime and the demand for a safe homeland, can never be tolerated. The increase of anti-Semitism across Europe from far right nationalist parties, and other diverse sources including some on the left, is a particular concern and must be utterly condemned.
Anti-Semitism is a distinct form of racism. Recent increases in people using “Zionist” as a substitute for “Jew” cannot be tolerated in our Party or our communities. We want to reassure members that as the Executive Officers of your local party we will fight to ensure that racist bigotry is not tolerated under any grounds.
The existence of Israel and its peoples right to self determination should not be questioned more than anyone’s right to a nation and self determination. This belief and the stand against racism are fundamental values and principles of the Labour Party.
We recognise that it is legitimate to criticise and/or oppose specific policies of Israeli governments and we note that many tens of thousands of Israeli citizens criticise their government on a daily basis through democratic processes. To critique the actions of a foreign government is one thing, but to conflate this with anti-Semitic rhetoric is unacceptable, much as it would be to criticise someone’s nationality or heritage on the basis of their government.
If anyone has concerns about the actions of a specific member we urge you to contact us immediately.
Brighton & Hove has the fifth largest Jewish community in the United Kingdom and this year Brighton and Hove will be celebrating 250 years of Brighton Jewry and the Labour Party and its members will be supporting these celebrations.
We welcome people from all backgrounds in the Labour Party, and we do this on a basis of mutual respect based on the long tradition of diversity in our city and party. We stand alongside all those that fight racism in all its forms.
Executive Committee and Officers of the Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party