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'I wanted him to stand down in 2016': Jeremy Corbyn was 'not a friend' say's Sir Keir Starmer

3 April 2023, 10:56

Sir Keir Starmer on Jeremy Corbyn

By Anna Fox

When questioned by Nick as to whether he would consider the former Labour leader a friend, Sir Keir curtly replied: “no”.

Nick Ferrari at Breakfast on LBC pressed Sir Keir Starmer on his "personal relationship" with Jeremy Corbyn, to which he replied: "I haven’t spoken to him in 2 and a half years".

Commenting on the recent decision by Labour’s governing body to block Mr Corbyn from standing as a Labour candidate at the next election, Sir Keir said his position on the matter was “very clear”.

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He continued by saying: “As we go into the next election, Jeremy Corbyn will not be a labour candidate”.

The former Labour Leader was suspended from being a Labour MP following a row over antisemitism and now sits as an Independent.

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Blasting the move as a “shameful attack on party democracy” Mr Corbyn criticised Sir Keir last week, saying he had “launched an assault on the rights of his own Labour members, breaking his pledge to build a united and democratic party”.

Sir Keir openly admitted to Nick that he refrained from voting for the former Labour Leader in 2015, saying “I didn’t vote for him in 2015 when he stood as leader” and “I wanted him to stand down in 2016”.

Mr Corbyn led Labour to defeat in the 2017 and 2019 general elections, with Sir Keir suspending him as a Labour MP in 2020.

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Reflecting on his impending three-year anniversary as Labour Leader, Sir Keir reminded Nick of what he initially promised his party and supporters, saying: “When I became leader I said I would root out antisemitism by its roots and I apologised for what had happened”.

Concluding their discussion, Nick prompted Sir Keir for a final time on his supposed “friendship” with Mr Corbyn, to which he replied, “no, not in the sense we went to visit each other or anything like that, I worked with him as a colleague”.

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