SCOTTISH Labour leader Richard Leonard has failed to condemn Jeremy Corbyn after he said claims of anti-Semitism were "dramatically overstated".

When asked for his position on Mr Corbyn's suspension, Mr Leonard praised the former leader's "anti-racist" activities.

He said: "I have known Jeremy Corbyn for decades. He is a life-long anti-racist campaigner.

"But I am not commenting on internal disciplinary matters."

READ MORE: Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn suspended

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said he supported the move to suspend his predecessor, saying in a broadcast interview: "I made it clear that we would not support antisemitism or the denial of antisemitism through the suggestion that it is exaggerated or factional...

"That is why I was disappointed by Jeremy Corbyn’s response and that is why appropriate action has been taken, which I fully support."

A Scottish Labour MSP has also defended Mr Corbyn on social media, saying he was not an anti-Semite 

Neil Findlay, who was Mr Corbyn's Scottish campaign manager and current MSP for Lothian, described the former leader as his friend on Twitter, and said: "He is no racist. He is no anti Semite.

"He is a life long campaigner against prejudice and injustice.


It comes after Mr Corbyn had the party whip withdrawn when he refused to retract a statement about a damning report on anti-Semitism within the Labour party, pubished today. 

READ MORE: Jewish MP who quit Labour over anti-Semitism tells of 'relentless' rape and acid attack threats

He said he did not agree with all of the report's findings, and said the extent of anti-Jewish racism within the party had been "dramatically overstated".