Labour MP Barry Sheerman apologises for 'antisemitic tweet' about 'a run on silver shekels'

Barry Sheerman
Huddersfield - A Labour MP has apologised for tweeting there had been a 'run on silver shekels' after two Jewish businessman missed out on peerages.

Barry Sheerman, the MP for Huddersfield, was accused of making an 'antisemitic trope' and is facing calls to be stripped of the party whip. 

Last night he tweeted: 'Apparently there has been a bit of a run on silver shekels!'

He followed it up half an hour later with: 'Apparently Richard Desmond and Philip Green were on the original list for seats in the House of Lords!' 

Antisemitism campaigners have urged Sir Keir Starmer to discipline his backbench MP and get serious about tackling anti-Jewish racism, which has dogged the party in recent years. 

After sparking outcry from Britain's Jewish community, Mr Sheerman quickly deleted the tweet and insisted it had been 'misrepresented' and was 'an attempt at irony'.

He wrote: 'My attempt at irony talking about thirty pieces of silver has been misrepresented by some comments and I am deleting it! Serves me right for rereading the entire bible in the lockdown!' 

Within an hour of this explanation, the Labour MP offered an apology for the 'clumsy' tweet and stressed he had fought anti-Semitism the entirety of his career.

Mr Sheerman wrote: 'I apologise for my earlier tweet. I did not intend the meaning which has upset many, and I am very sorry for the upset and offense I have caused.

'I will think more carefully in future and will reflect on this.'

But campaigners demanded he lose the Labour Party whip after making the inflammatory remarks.

Source: Daily mail