The British Labour Party is facing fresh accusations of anti-Semitism by inviting to parliament a high-ranking figure from the Iranian-backed Houthi movement which slogan includes “curse the Jews.”
Brighton MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle is hosting Houthi international spokesman Ahmed Alshami at a meeting in parliament on Tuesday, organized by the far-left Stop the War Coalition previously chaired by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.
The Houthis have increasingly incorporated anti-Israel and anti-Semitic rhetoric into their speeches, as part of the growing network of Iranian-backed proxy forces in the region, including Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon. Cooperation with non-state actors is an integral part of Iran’s foreign policy to consolidate power across a region dominated by Sunni Islam.
The Iranian-backed rebels have clearly adopted their strident anti-Western rhetoric from its patrons in Tehran and operate under the slogan: “God is great, death to the US, death to Israel, curse the Jews, and victory for Islam.”
A report by Chatham House, based on interviews with individuals who have been granted rare access to the Houthis’ inner circle of leaders, suggests “that the core leadership is in many cases genuinely committed to the Islamic revolutionary principles set out by Hussein Badr al-Deen al-Houthi, which in turn borrow heavily from those of Iran.”
Independent MP John Woodcock, who resigned from Labour last year in protest at the party’s anti-Semitism crisis, said it was “staggering that a Labour MP is welcoming this virulently antisemitic terror group into parliament.” Woodcock added: “Time and again, Corbyn and his allies welcome in Jew haters and side with the extremist enemies of the UK.”
The Jewish Leadership Council issued a statement, saying, “The Houthis drove the Jews of Yemen out of their homes, destroying the ancient community. The Houthi flag and slogan says ‘a curse on the Jews.’”
“Peace in Yemen is vital, but nobody should roll out the red carpet for a Houthi spokesperson without challenging his antisemitism,” the group noted.
The Labour Party on Monday refused to condemn the meeting or Russell-Moyle’s role in organizing it.