Despite the results of Thursday’s British Parliament elections, challenges in combating bigotry and hatred in the United Kingdom continue, British Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis said Friday.
“The elections may be over, but concerns about the resurgence of anti-Semitism remain,” Mirvis said in a statement.
“Islamophobia, racism, and other forms of prejudice continue to afflict our communities and, as has been well-publicized, even our political parties,” he said.
“It is vital that we now bring the country together, ensuring that the voices of people from across our society are heard and respected. We must focus on our shared values and leave all hatred and prejudice far behind us,” Mirvis added.
Outgoing Labor party leader Jeremy Corbyn, whose party was soundly defeated in Thursday’s vote, has been criticized for years for having allowed anti-Semitism to flourish in the party ranks under his stewardship.
Last month, Mirvis denounced Corbyn as unfit to be prime minister, lamenting “a new poison – sanctioned from the top – has taken root in the Labour Party.”
Following the results of Thursday’s election, which saw the Conservatives’ Boris Johnson win in a landslide, Board of Deputies of British Jews President Marie van der Zyl called for swift action to be taken to restore the Jewish community’s faith in Britain’s main opposition party.
“We urge the next leader of the Labour Party to act quickly to implement the steps repeatedly recommended by groups representing British Jews and to finally begin to resolve this crisis,” she added.
In a concession speech, Corbyn said that he intended to step down as leader of Labour, but did not specify an exact date.