UK's Labour party reinstates Corbyn after suspension over anti-Semitism report response

Former party leader was suspended by Keir Starmer in October

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn arrives for the annual Commonwealth Service at Westminster Abbey in London, Britain March 9, 2020. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls/File Photo
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Jeremy Corbyn, the former leader of Britain's Labour Party, will be readmitted after he was suspended from the party for downplaying a report that detailed serious failings in its handling of anti-Semitism complaints under his leadership.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission said in October it had found evidence of failure to adequately train people investigating alleged anti-Semitism, political interference in the processing of complaints, and harassment of individuals. This was during Mr Corbyn's tenure as Labour leader, between 2015 and April of this year.

Mr Corbyn later downplayed the report and said its findings were "dramatically overstated" by political opponents, as well the media.

However, a panel from the party's governing body is understood to have agree to lift Mr Corbyn's suspension, The Guardian reported on Tuesday.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has been trying to make a clean break from the hard-left era of Mr Corbyn as he seeks to turn around the party’s fortunes after four successive general election defeats since 2010.

Mr Corbyn welcomed the decision by Labour's National Executive Committee to reinstate him.

But the Board of Deputies of British Jews said: “Today’s decision is a retrograde step for the party in its relations with the Jewish community. Labour’s mountain to climb to win back the trust of our community just got higher.

Mr Starmer said on Twitter: "I know that this has been another painful day for the Jewish community and those Labour members who have fought so hard to tackle anti-Semitism. I know the hurt that has been caused and the trauma people have felt.

"I know we have a long way to go, but I am absolutely resolute in my determination to make the Labour Party a safe place for Jewish people. I stand by the commitments I made last month to accept the findings and the recommendations of the EHRC’s report in full."

He added that he would establish an independent complaints process "as soon as possible" in the New Year.

Earlier on Tuesday, Mr Corbyn said he regretted his comments on the report and it is understood that the statement was also submitted to the party as part of the investigation process shortly after his suspension.

"I hope this matter is resolved as quickly as possible, so that the party can work together to root out anti-Semitism and unite to oppose and defeat this deeply damaging Conservative government," Mr Corbyn wrote on Facebook.