Liverpool Riverside MP Lousie Ellman is president of the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM), whose now-resigned chair Jeremy Newmark has attacked the new ‘Jewish Voice for Labour’ (JVL) group set up last year.
Where JLM is firm on the centrality of Israel to Jewish identity, JVL’s website says it “does not make promoting the centrality of Israel to Jewish life a condition of membership” and has attacked JLM for promoting Israel.
Ms Ellman and the CLP executive last year blocked an attempt by Riverside CLP (constituency Labour party) to call for Labour to investigate ‘interference’ by Israeli state agencies in the workings of the party in the wake of Al Jazeera’s controversial undercover documentary, The Lobby, in which JLM was specifically mentioned.
It’s safe to say that there is tension between the two groups – and last night, Riverside CLP voted to affiliate to JVL. The CLP chair, Nev Bann, resigned as a result.
Riverside CLP has been at the centre of controversy after the CLP was suspended and then reinstated only on condition of it being run on a branch/delegate structure instead of the ‘all member’ basis it had operated on until then – a move condemned by left-wing members as a politically-driven to support the right in retaining its influence and to protect ‘centrist’ councillors. The reason for the suspension was alleged antisemitism – an allegation hotly denied by members and which was ultimately dropped with no action taken.
At least one other Liverpool CLP is discussing a similar affiliation move.
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