Luton councillor resigns over '˜ill-judged' Hitler slurs
A councillor has resigned from Luton Borough Council over claims she '˜glorified Hitler' in a series of anti-semitic tweets.
Post uncovered by the Campaign Against Antisemitism show Cllr Aysegul Gurbuz claiming on her personal Twitter account that Hitler was the “greatest man on earth” and that without the Holocaust “these Jews would’ve wiped Palestine years ago”.
Another tweet shows Cllr Gurbuz joking: “Iran are going to have their own nuclear weapon and are going to wipe Israel off the map”.
The messages – dated from between October 2011 and July 2014 – were all posted before Miss Gurbuz was elected as a Labour councillor for High Town last May.
After the posts came to light on Sunday Cllr Gurbuz, 20, was suspended by the Labour party.
Last night she decided to resign from the council.
In a statement to the BBC she said: “Before I was an elected councillor a number of comments were made on my Twitter account that were ill-judged and offensive, regardless of their context.
“At the time I was just 16 or 17.
“Multiple people had access to my account and the tweets made do not reflect what I believe, but I take full responsibility for what was spoken in my name.
“I am horrified to read back what was written and I apologise for them in their entirety.”
She added: “As such I believe it is the right thing to acknowledge the pain I have caused and have resigned from Luton Borough Council as an elected representative.
“I will not be issuing any further statements but to all those who campaigned with or voted for me I apologise for letting you and the Labour Party down.”
Cllr Gurbuz, who has since taken down her Twitter account, is currently a student at the University of Warwick- where she volunteers as the event co-ordinator for the student union’s Palestine Society.
In a statement the Campaign Against Antisemitism said that there is “no defence” for the posts.
It added: “The Holocaust was a uniquely dark chapter of our recent history, when more than six million Jews were murdered as part of a plan put in place by Adolf Hitler.
“Not only do the tweets glorify Hitler, they also express hope that Iran will wipe out another six million Jews in Israel with a nuclear weapon.
“Antisemitism is rising in Europe and in the UK, and the regular revelations of antisemitic tweets and opinions emanating even from senior Labour party figures such as Sir Gerald Kaufman MP has failed to elicit any meaningful response from Jeremy Corbyn.
“How many more cases must we see before the Labour Party takes action?”
A Labour Party spokesperson said: “Councillor Gurbuz has been suspended from the Labour Party pending an investigation.”