London Mayor Sadiq Khan Apologizes to Chief Rabbi Over Remarks on Gaza

London Mayor Sadiq Khan Apologizes to Chief Rabbi Over Remarks on Gaza
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London (Parliament News) – London Mayor Sadiq Khan apologizes to Chief Rabbi after remarks implying criticism stemmed from being Muslim. Khan expresses regret for any discomfort caused and pledges to continue fostering unity in London’s diverse communities.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan has been compelled to apologise to the Chief Rabbi after appearing to indicate that his criticism of the mayor’s call for an instantaneous Gaza ceasefire was inspired by his being Muslim.

Chief Rabbi Sir Ephraim Mirvis had stated on October 31, that after satisfying Mr Khan, he had described to the mayor that “a ceasefire now would be an unreliable stepping stone to yet more Hamas terrorist brutality”.

How Did Sadiq Khan Address Criticism from Jewish Leaders?

In a YouTube discussion this week with the broadcaster Mehdi Hasan, Mr Khan stated he was “disappointed” by the criticism grounded at him by “Jewish leaders and Jewish friends”.

He pointed out that Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham called for a ceasefire very shortly after him, but indicated that he did not receive similar objection from the Chief Rabbi or the Jewish Chronicle newspaper. 

“He has, along with other Jewish leaders, been dear to me, and we have worked hard together to connect our city and celebrate our diversity. At times it is clear to me, and others, that as a mayor of London of Islamic faith, I am held to a separate standard and that can be frustrating – especially during a divisive election campaign. But, it wasn’t fair of me to have dropped that frustration at the Chief Rabbi. I am sorry for any discomfort this has caused and will continue working with Jewish leaders to build a safer London for everyone.”

What Did Greg Hands Say About Khan’s Remarks?

London minister Greg Hands, MP for Chelsea and Fulham, slammed Mr Khan’s original remarks as “misguided and offensive”. He stated: “I welcome Sadiq Khan’s apology. But his original comment was misguided and offensive. Part of the role of the Mayor of London should be to calm community tensions not to be inflammatory.”

What Was Tory Mayoral Candidate Susan Hall’s Response?

Tory mayoral candidate Susan Hall stated: “It’s important we continue to bring communities in our great city together.”

The debate came just days before the May 2 polling day for the London mayoral election. The latest poll, by Savanta for the Mile End Institute at Queen Mary University of London, positioned Mr Khan ahead of Tory Susan Hall by 13 points. The void between the Labour mayor and Conservative candidate seems to have closed since the beginning of the mayoral race, though the polls use different methodologies.

Tension over this year’s result has been exacerbated by the switch to the first-past-the-post voting system and the requirement for photo ID to be able to vote.

Daniele Naddei

Daniele Naddei is a journalist at Parliament News covering European affairs, was born in Naples on April 8, 1991. He also serves as the Director of the CentroSud24 newspaper. During the period from 2010 to 2013, Naddei completed an internship at the esteemed local radio station Radio Club 91. Subsequently, he became the author of a weekly magazine published by the Italian Volleyball Federation of Campania (FIPAV Campania), which led to his registration in the professional order of Journalists of Campania in early 2014, listed under publicists. From 2013 to 2018, he worked as a freelance photojournalist and cameraman for external services for Rai and various local entities, including TeleCapri, CapriEvent, and TLA. Additionally, between 2014 and 2017, Naddei collaborated full-time with various newspapers in Campania, both in print and online. During this period, he also resumed his role as Editor-in-Chief at Radio Club 91.
Naddei is actively involved as a press officer for several companies and is responsible for editing cultural and social events in the city through his association with the Medea Fattoria Sociale. This experience continued until 2021. Throughout these years, he hosted or collaborated on football sports programs for various local broadcasters, including TLA, TvLuna, TeleCapri, Radio Stonata, Radio Amore, and Radio Antenna Uno.
From 2016 to 2018, Naddei was employed as an editor at newspapers of national interest within the circuit, including Internazionale24, Salute24, and OggiScuola. Since 2019, Naddei has been one of the creators of the Rabona television program "Calcio è Passione," which has been broadcast on TeleCapri Sport since 2023.