UK Labour hosts Israeli Labour Party to 'rebuild relationship' after Corbyn era

UK Labour hosts Israeli Labour Party to 'rebuild relationship' after Corbyn era
Labour has been trying to win back Jewish and pro-Israel voters who were alienated when Jeremy Corbyn presided over the party.
2 min read
29 April, 2022
Labour leader Keir Starmer has gone on a charm offensive to win back pro-Israel voters [Getty]

The UK's Labour Party hosted members of the Israeli Labour Party this week as the former tries to win back support from Jewish and pro-Israel voters.

The nine-member Israeli delegation included deputy mayor of Tel Aviv Chen Arieli and party chief executive Nir Rosen, The Guardian reported.

The Israelis met high-level Labour Party figures including leader Keir Starmer, shadow chancellor Angela Rayner and shadow foreign minister David Lammy, according to Labour Friends of Israel.

Labour took the Israeli delegation door-knocking in the north London borough of Barnet - home to a large Jewish population - ahead of local elections on 5 May, according to The Guardian.

Labour Friends of Israel said the trip was "an important landmark in rebuilding the relationship between our sister parties based on our shared values".

In 2018, the Israeli party cut ties with then-Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn over the handling of anti-Semitism allegations.

Labour lost considerable Jewish support when led by Corbyn, a veteran of pro-Palestine activism. A government watchdog report found Labour had broke equality laws in its handling of anti-Semitism complaints.

Since Starmer became Labour in 2020, the party has tried to win back Jewish support.

While speaking at a Jewish festival in December, Lammy apologised for endorsing Corbyn as leader back in 2015, calling the decision a "mistake".

Starmer last year condemned boycotts of Israel, saying they would cause "huge damage" to UK-Israel relations.