Sir Keir Starmer – leader of the UK Labour Party – does not accept the Amnesty report on Apartheid in Isreal
Sir Keir is quoted today* saying that ‘he did not accept the findings of the Amnesty report that Israel is an apartheid state’. This was said in connection with a visit by representatives of the Israeli Labor party in London.
Amnesty is not the only organisation to find that Israel is running an apartheid state. In January 2021, B’Tselem – an organisation based in Israel – produced a detailed report which concluded the same thing. This was followed by Human Rights Watch in July who also produced an extremely detailed report which also concluded that Israel was an apartheid state. Then there was the Amnesty report in February this year closely followed by the UN special rapporteur’s report in March. Four trusted organisations, all of whom producing factual and detailed reports and all concluding that Israel was indeed running an apartheid state as far as the Palestinians were concerned. Exactly as in South Africa, rights were removed, homes were demolished, movement restricted and two sets of laws created for Jews and Palestinians.
It is therefore extremely difficult for Sir Keir Starmer to deny the conclusions of the Amnesty report without also denying all the others. The Labour party was bedevilled by allegations of anti-Semitism during the Corbyn years a stain which still remains. Unfortunately, any criticism of the state is met by claims of anti-Semitism. All the above reports were so condemned.
Sir Keir is no doubt sincere in his desire to rid his party of any anti-Semitism. But he will not do that by denying the facts. If he does not accept the Amnesty report (and by extension all the others) he should rebut it item by item. It is disappointing that someone who wants to become leader of the country and import some integrity into our politics, should act so cravenly.
*Guardian 29 April 2022
Further link added 1 May 2022