Zarah Sultana, newly elected to represent Coventry South (albeit with a drastically reduced majority), reportedly told a Jewish student that it was “privilege” that allowed them to argue for peace in the Middle East, saying: “it is your privilege that lets you speak on stage and call for peace.”
In social media posts dating back to her (recent) student days and since deleted, Ms Sultana said that students who “go to Zionist conferences and trips should be ashamed of themselves” because they were advocating a “racist ideology”, and described Israel as a “state created through ethnic cleansing”.
She also said that “those who lobby for Israel” would “in the near future feel the same shame and regret as South African Apartheid supporters.”
One Jewish student who studied at Birmingham University at the same time as Ms Sultana said: “Her whole raison d’etre was that Jewish students were basically privileged white people who had no right to speak out on racism or injustices” and that she and her peers “completely overstepped the mark” when they “routinely targeted Jewish students who objected to their way of thinking.”
Ms Sultana has already been caught in controversy over her adoption of the language of antisemitic genocidal terrorist groups in advocating for “violent resistance” against Israelis; saying that she would celebrate the deaths of Tony Blair and other past and present world leaders (for which she was forced to apologise and was defended by Labour frontbencher John McDonnell); writing that “the Labour Right are scum and genuinely make me sick. Is there any form of discrimination that they won’t weaponise to politically point score like they’ve done in the past with antisemitism and now with homophobia?”; and accusing Jewish students on social media of being on the payroll of Israel’s Prime Minister.
Ms Sultana is a supporter of Rebecca Long-Bailey’s candidacy for the leadership of the Labour Party, and spoke at Ms Long-Bailey’s campaign launch.
On 28th May 2019, the Equality and Human Rights Commission launched a full statutory investigation into antisemitism in the Labour Party following a formal referral and detailed legal representations from Campaign Against Antisemitism, which is the complainant.
In the first release of its Antisemitism in Political Parties research, Campaign Against Antisemitism showed that Labour Party candidates for Parliament in the 2019 general election accounted for 82 percent of all incidents of antisemitic discourse by parliamentary candidates.
Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Antisemitism Barometer 2019 showed that antisemitism on the far-left of British politics has surpassed that of the far-right.