Former London mayor Ken Livingstone
Britain’s Labour Party has come under pressure from a powerful Jewish lobby to expel former London mayor and MP Ken Livingstone, who says Adolf Hitler supported Zionism.
The British Jews organization made the call on Monday, shortly after Livingstone’s interview with the BBC, where he doubled down on his remarks about Hitler’s support for Zionism.
“During the 1930s, Hitler collaborated with the Zionists and supported them because he believed that a solution to his problem — the Jews — was that they should all move to Palestine,” the veteran MP told BBC radio.
Livingstone told the radio show that expelling him would be “very difficult” as he has the evidence needed to back the statement.
The comments revived a controversy from April, where he made the same remarks on the same radio show and was subsequently suspended by party leader Jeremy Corbyn.
“After I did the interview with you and I got suspended, I couldn’t walk down the street for people stopping me and saying ‘we know what you said is true – don’t give in to them,’” Livingstone said. “It’s going to be very difficult for them to expel me from the Labour Party when I’ve got this whole sheaf of documents and papers which shows that what I said was true.”
In its Monday statement, the British Jews blasted Livingstone for attempting to “rewrite history.”
“Every day that Labour does not expel him is a stain on the party,” the lobby’s Board of Deputies Vice President Marie van der Zyl said.
The Israeli regime was illegally established in 1948, when it occupied Palestinian land along with expanses of other Arab territories during full-fledged military operations. The occupied lands also include Lebanon’s Shebaa Farms and Syria’s Golan Heights.
In 1967, it occupied the Palestinian territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem al-Quds, and the Gaza Strip. It later annexed the West Bank and East al-Quds in a move never recognized by the international community.
“The creation of the state of Israel was fundamentally wrong, because there had been a Palestinian community there for 2,000 years,” Livingstone told Arabic TV station al-Ghad al-Arabi in May.
The Labour Party has suspended as many as 50 members over allegations of “anti-Semitism” and racism over the past months.