Joan Ryan, the MP for Enfield North, has become the eighth Labour MP to resign from the Labour Party and join the Independent Group, saying that the Party had become “institutionally antisemitic” and gripped by a “culture of anti-Jewish racism.”
Ms Ryan’s resignation follows the departure of seven Labour MPs on Monday over antisemitism: Chuka Umunna, Luciana Berger, Chris Leslie, Angela Smith, Mike Gapes, Gavin Shuker and Ann Coffey. Previously, former Labour MPs Frank Field and Ivan Lewis also resigned over antisemitism in the Labour Party.
This makes Ms Ryan the tenth MP to resign from the Party over antisemitism.
She has been a fierce and fearless critic of Mr Corbyn and the Labour Party’s failure to deal with its antisemitism crisis for years. She has even faced attempts to deselect her as a Labour MP as a result.
In a statement, Ms Ryan, who served as a minister under Tony Blair, said that she “cannot remain a member of the Labour Party while this requires me to suggest that I believe Jeremy Corbyn – a man who has presided over the culture of anti-Jewish racism and hatred for Israel which now afflicts my former party – is fit to be Prime Minister of this country. He is not.”
Campaign Against Antisemitism has referred the Labour Party to the Equality and Human Rights Commission, which is now due to decide whether to open a full statutory investigation into antisemitic discrimination and victimisation within the Party.