Corbyn faces questions over anti-Semitic mural
A spokesman for the Labour leader insisted Jeremy Corbyn did not condone the ‘anti-Semitic’ and ‘offensive’ mural.
Jeremy Corbyn faced questions over his apparent support for an artist behind an anti-Semitic mural on a London street.
The Labour leader was challenged by some of his own MPs over his response to a Facebook post by the street artist Mear One about the plan to paint over the work.
Mr Corbyn’s response suggested the artist was “in good company” because the Rockefeller family had covered over a mural featuring Lenin in their New York development.
Tomorrow they want to buff my mural Freedom Of Expression. London Calling, Public artPosted by MEAR ONE on Monday, October 1, 2012
In his post responding to the imminent destruction of the mural, Mr Corbyn said: “Why? You are in good company. Rockerfeller (sic) destroyed Diego Viera’s mural because it includes a picture of Lenin.”
It is understood that at the time of the post in 2012, Mr Corbyn did not condone the artwork but was expressing concerns about free speech.
A spokesman for Mr Corbyn said: “In 2012, Jeremy was responding to concerns about the removal of public art on grounds of freedom of speech.
“However, the mural was offensive, used anti-Semitic imagery, which has no place in our society, and it is right that it was removed.”
The mural, in east London, was painted by Mear One – whose real name is Kalen Ockerman – and depicted a group of businessmen playing a Monopoly-style game on a board balanced on the backs of people.
The artist denied being anti-Semitic, saying the mural is about “class and privilege” and contains a group of bankers”made up of Jewish and white Anglos”.
Mr Corbyn’s response to the decision to paint over the work was highlighted by Labour MP Luciana Berger who demanded an explanation.
Luciana is not alone in asking for an explanation. https://t.co/Cmwtn9yAeB— Wes Streeting MP (@wesstreeting) March 23, 2018
Fellow Labour MP Wes Streeting said Ms Berger was “not alone” in demanding an explanation.
Both MPs have previously been critical about Mr Corbyn’s response to allegations of anti-Semitism within Labour ranks.
I asked the Leader’s Office for an explanation about this Facebook post first thing this morning. I’m still waiting for a response. pic.twitter.com/DL8ynBtES4— Luciana Berger (@lucianaberger) March 23, 2018