On 4th November 2019, Ms Sultana’s comments in  and  were reported in the media; it was additionally reported that she had said she would “celebrate” the deaths of Tony Blair, Benjamin Netanyahu and George Bush; that she had expressed support for “violent resistance” by Palestinians against Israelis, and that she had written: “There will come a time in the near future where those [who] lobby for Israel feel the same shame and regret as South African apartheid supporters.”
It was further reported that Ms Sultana had expressed contrition for her comments about world leaders, saying: “Today I was shown tweets from a deleted account dating back several years from when I was a student. This was written out of frustration rather than any malice. I was a young activist exasperated by endless cycles of global suffering, violence and needless killing resulting from decisions by political leaders, from the Iraq war to the killing of over 2,000 Palestinians in 2014, mostly civilians, which was condemned by the United Nations. I do not support violence and I should not have articulated my anger in the manner I did, for which I apologise.”
On 5th November 2019, her comments in  were reported in the media. Hannah Sharron, a former Union of Jewish Students communications officer, was reported as saying of Ms Sultana’s conduct whilst at Birmingham University: “Zarah was among a group [of] students on campus committed to defending Palestine and who directed this at Jewish students. It meant we felt uncomfortable in participating in any of the structures of university life, or in the student union [sic] where we should have been able to represent ourselves and our peers.”
A new statement by Ms Sultana was reportedly released, in which she said: “BAME structures bring together all people who experience different forms of racism. I support Labour’s BAME structures and their inclusivity of all people, including Jewish people, who experience racism. At university, I used insensitive language when trying to articulate the need for a specific campaign for students who experience racism based on the colour of their skin, such as racist stop and searches on campuses and the attainment gap. I should have been more inclusive and I shouldn’t have used the language I did. I am genuinely sorry for having done so.”
On 5th November 2019, her comment in  was reported in the media, and Ms Sultana was reported as having apologised, saying: “This message was from a number of years ago, before the narrative had gained the traction it has now dismissing deeply-felt concerns about anti-semitism [sic] in the party as ‘smears’, in which the word ‘weaponised’ is often used. I absolutely reject that narrative and, as Jeremy [Corbyn] has said, I believe that anyone says it’s ‘all a smear’, is wrong and is contributing to the problem. I would not use the word weaponise today and apologise for having done so.”
On 7th November 2019, it was reported that Ms Sultana was facing deselection as a candidate, having been summoned for a further interview with Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee (NEC).
On 8th November 2019, the Editor of the Politics Home news website reported that the NEC had confirmed Ms Sultana’s candidacy. Ms Sultana held her campaign launch that evening.
On 14th November 2019, Ms Sultana’s tweet in  was disclosed on Twitter by the Political Editor of LBC, alongside further tweets in which she told another Twitter user who was “pro-Israel” to “jump off a cliff”; stated her belief in a one-state solution for Israelis and Palestinians, but claimed that “Zionists will not willingly assimilate with Palestinians”; and said: “Once I changed my name on Facebook to Zarah Doofenshmirtz and my dad told my mom I had become a Jew and she was p****d.”
On 15th November 2019, it was reported that Ms Sultana had published a statement on Twitter in which she said: “I am sorry that I posted these offensive comments on social media as a teenager. I was young and immature and the language I used was wrong. Through my political activism I have been on a journey which has included working closely with Jewish comrades who have taught me about the language and history of antisemitism.” We note that Ms Sultana, who is now only 26, was apparently referring in her apology to the tweets revealed by LBC, including . However, her other statements were posted while an adult at university. We further note that these were posted after her visit to Auschwitz in 2013, a trip which she claimed had left her determined “never to minimise the suffering of Jewish people.”
On 12th December 2019, Ms Sultana was elected to Parliament.
We do not know whether disciplinary action has been taken by the Labour Party against Ms Sultana, and at the time of writing, on 26th November 2019, we have no record of any. However, the circumstances and outcomes of any such action would remain unknown, owing to the conditions of secrecy imposed by Baroness Chakrabarti’s report on antisemitism in the Labour Party.
In November 2019, Campaign Against Antisemitism put this matter to Ms Sultana, but did not receive a response.