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Apologise for victims snub, DUP MP tells Labour chief

DUP MP Gregory Campbell has called on Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to apologise to Troubles victims after he failed to meet with them during his trip to Northern Ireland.

Mr Campbell, who had invited Mr Corbyn to meet with victims during his visit, described the Labour leader's "snub" as a demonstration of "basic bad manners and disrespect".

The East Londonderry MP said Mr Corbyn's office had apologised for how the invitation was handled, but he called for the Opposition leader to apologise to the victims.

Mr Corbyn visited Belfast on Thursday and Derry, Strabane and the Irish border yesterday.

He has denied snubbing victims of the IRA.

The Labour leader said he was only notified of the invitation on Wednesday, when his schedule had already been agreed.

He said shadow Northern Ireland secretary Tony Lloyd would be happy to meet victims..

"It is absolutely not a snub," said Mr Corbyn. "I did receive a letter from Gregory Campbell yesterday. We had already made the arrangements for this visit.

"Tony Lloyd, our Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary, will be meeting them."

Mr Campbell said Mr Corbyn had behaved disrespectfully.

"It took 10 days for Mr Corbyn's office to even acknowledge my invitation to meet victims of terror," he added.

"Even at that stage, it was only an acknowledgement and no commitment to either accept or decline.

"This is not only disappointing, it is downright disrespectful and basic bad manners.

"While Mr Corbyn's office has apologised to me for how this invitation has been handled, actions speak louder than words."

The Belfast Telegraph has contacted the Labour Party for a response.

Belfast Telegraph