Plaid Cymru’s inaction on complaints undermines worthwhile recommendations in its new internal report on antisemitism
Plaid Cymru has published its internal report on antisemitism following a review led by its Westminster leader, Liz Saville Roberts MP.
Campaign Against Antisemitism made submissions to the review – in the form of a series of cases that were intended both to inform the review and to function as complaints about the subjects. The review came in the wake of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s (EHRC) devastating report into antisemitism in the Labour Party. Campaign Against Antisemitism was the complainant in the EHRC”s investigation.
Plaid Cymru has now published its report – titled “Plaid Cymru commissioned Review into Antisemitism undertaken by Liz Saville Roberts MP” – and it makes numerous worthwhile recommendations. The Party, for example, has previously adopted an amended version of the International Definition of Antisemitism, and the report now rightly recommends that the Party adopts the full and unamended Definition. It also makes prudent recommendations to improve the Party’s disciplinary process.
However, the recommendations are only as useful as the Party’s willingness to tackle the problem of anti-Jewish racism, and the Party’s actions in the weeks since the review was announced and in the days since the report’s publication late last week, give cause for concern.
The Party has, for example, stood by at least two of the subjects of our complaint who are standing as a candidate for the Party in the Senedd election in May.
Our inquiries with the Party as to the status of these complaints has also so far not been met with a response (in contrast to the Party’s collaborative approach with us in recent months).
Joe Glasman, Head of Political Investigations at Campaign Against Antisemitism, said: “We are grateful to Liz Saville Roberts MP for her internal review into antisemitism in Plaid Cymru. We have concerns over the Party’s failure to adopt the International Definition of Antisemitism in full, and it is right that the report recommends that the Party rectifies this shortcoming. We hope it will do so immediately.
“Numerous other recommendations in the report pertaining to disciplinary procedures and raising awareness of antisemitism are also very welcome.
“However, we do not yet have clarity on whether the individuals whom we have reported to the Party will be investigated, and our inquiries with the Party have so far gone unanswered, which does not bode well for an improved disciplinary process. We also regret that the Party is reportedly standing by at least two of these individuals, who are standing as Plaid Cymru candidates in May’s Senedd election. Good words and fine reports are no substitute for real action against antisemitism, and it is a shame that this report is undermined by the Party’s apparent continued confidence in problematic figures.”
Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Antisemitism Barometer 2019 showed that antisemitism on the far-left of British politics has surpassed that of the far-right.
Campaign Against Antisemitism advocates for zero tolerance of antisemitism in public life. To that end we monitor all political parties and strive to ensure that any cases of concern are properly addressed.