LABOUR has been accused by the Conservatives of being in “utter disarray” on Brexit after Richard Leonard failed to say if his party would campaign for or against Britain’s EU withdrawal in a snap general election.

Hours after the Scottish Labour leader had made his remarks on the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme, Diane Abbott, the Shadow Home Secretary, declared from the Commons dispatch box that Labour was "committed to honouring" the 2016 Brexit vote.

During the third day of the Brexit debate, the London MP said: "I want to stress for Members on this side of the House that we are committed to honouring the referendum vote, and, more than that, we understand what moved so many millions of our fellow citizens to vote for Brexit."

In a keynote speech on Thursday, Jeremy Corbyn called for a general election "at the earliest opportunity" to "break the deadlock" at Westminster over Brexit.

Mr Leonard was asked directly about what the party's stance would be if a snap poll were to be called and replied: "It's not a matter of campaigning for or against Brexit...Our policy on Brexit so far has been to try to secure the best deal.”

But the Central Scotland MSP then pointed out how the Labour manifesto going into an election would be “decided by the Labour Party and we've got a process for determining that”.

His Labour colleague, the MEP Catherine Stihler warned that if the party did not oppose Brexit, it would be failing the communities it represented.

"If a general election is called, it is absolutely vital that Labour stands on a platform to oppose Brexit," she declared.

"It would be calamitous if both the Tories and Labour went into that election promising to facilitate Brexit, particularly in Scotland.”

Ms Stihler added: "The Labour Party exists to stand up for the poorest in society, who will suffer the most as a result of a Brexit that will decimate our economy. If we fail to oppose Brexit, we will be failing the communities we represent."

Criticism from Labour’s opponents was even starker.

Scottish Conservative MP Stephen Kerr said: “This car crash interview makes clear once again the utter disarray of Labour's position on Brexit.

"Richard Leonard wants a general election but cannot confirm if it would be pro or anti-Brexit. It's pathetic,” declared the Stirling MP.

"It shows a complete lack of leadership from a weak party that simply cannot stand up to the SNP in Scotland," he added.

Keith Brown, the Nationalists' deputy leader, noted: “Labour have proved that they are gearing up, once again, to sell-out the people of Scotland; this time on Brexit. Their members must be in despair.”

The MSP for Clackmannashire and Dunblane went on: "Demanding a general election without a position on the biggest political issue of the day is the height of incompetence. In fact, it's laughable.

"Richard Leonard's inability to give a straight answer simply suggests that at heart, like his boss at Westminster, he's a signed up Brexiteer.”

Mr Brown added: "He has completely failed in his attempts to try and salvage the Labour Party in Scotland. The polls are clear: Labour will not be forgiven for siding with the Tories in their plans to devastate the Scottish economy through crashing out of the EU."

Earlier this week, Mr Corbyn’s spokesman acknowledged the party’s policy on Brexit going into an election would be determined by the usual “internal party democracy” and not by the leader or his close advisers.

Two weeks ago, a poll suggested 72 per cent of Labour members wanted a People’s Vote on Brexit and that, in one, 88 per cent would vote to stay in the EU.

Meanwhile, a senior party source denied reports that Labour MPs in marginal constituencies had warned the leadership that they were not ready for a snap poll.

One insider explained that emails had been sent to Jennie Formby, the party’s General Secretary, some months ago about the issue of resources but this was in a general sense and not specifically related to a snap general election.

Names of MPs said to have been mentioned in the emails included Paul Sweeney, the MP for Glasgow North East, who has a majority of 242, Ged Killen, the MP for Rutherglen and Hamilton West, who has one of 265, and Danielle Rowley, the MP for Midlothian, whose majority is 885.

A Labour party spokesman said: “With the Government in chaos, the Labour Party is on a permanent election footing and is providing resources and running campaigns in both offensive and defensive seats.“