Former London Mayor: Committee Investigating anti-Semitism Is 'Obsessed With Hitler'

In written statement, Ken Livingstone slams line of question at committee hearing over anti-Semitism probe.

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Haaretz
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Former London mayor Ken Livingstone leaves after appearing on the LBC radio station in London, April 30, 2016.
Former London mayor Ken Livingstone leaves after appearing on the LBC radio station in London, April 30, 2016.Credit: Neil Hall, Reuters
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Haaretz

The U.K.'s Home Affairs committee conducting an inquiry into anti-Semitism seems to be "obsessed" with "Hitler, the Nazis, Israel, Zionism and the Labour party," charged former London mayor Ken Livingstone in a written statement to the committee, posted on Tuesday.

Livingstone, who was suspended from the Labour party for stating that Hitler was a supporter of Zionism, named Hitler 11 times in the statement written in wake of his questioning at a committee hearing.

"The overwhelming majority of questions asked of me were about my views on the history of Germany in the 1930s, Hitler, the Nazis, Israel, Zionism and the Labour Party," said the former mayor. "Committee members seemed to be obsessed with these issues.”

According to the Jewish Chronicle, one of the committee members accused Livingstone himself of being obsessed with Nazi history.

"This was not an inquiry into me or into the Labour Party, but into antisemitism," wrote in his statement. “However, the committee did not seriously question me about these important issues."

Livingstone also maintained that some of the questions focused on past events that he said have no relevance on the issues at hand today.

“I was also questioned about a number of past events involving myself, going back to the 1980s that bear no relation to the question of whether prejudice against the Jewish community has increased or the dangers facing Jewish people arising from terrorism," he said.

Livingstone cited one such incident as the time he lashed out at a Jewish reporter for the Evening Standard, calling him a "concentration camp guard."

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