Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Sex Slave Beheading' Outrage and Labour Party Chief; TWEETS ON GANG RAPE AND CORBYN'S TOP WOMAN ALLY'I Don't Think Anyone Publishing That Bile Belongs in a Progressive Party'

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Sex Slave Beheading' Outrage and Labour Party Chief; TWEETS ON GANG RAPE AND CORBYN'S TOP WOMAN ALLY'I Don't Think Anyone Publishing That Bile Belongs in a Progressive Party'

Article excerpt

Byline: Kate Proctor Political Reporter

LABOUR was plunged into a furious row today as a local party chief was suspended for tweeting about a senior female MP being beheaded by Islamist terrorists.

Ian McKenzie, chairman of the Lewisham East constituency which is about to stage a key by-election, faces disciplinary action over two "misogynistic" tweets in which he wrote that Emily Thornberry was "too old" to be considered a sex slave by Islamic State. In one post from 2016, he wrote that Ms Thornberry, now Continued on Page 4 Continued from Page 1 shadow foreign secretary, was: "too old for ISIS. They won't make a sex slave of her. They'll behead her and dump her in a mass grave."

In another message from 2015, he said: "Maybe she'd agree sex slavery to one man only, provided he didn't sell her on or insist on gang rape."

Mr McKenzie led a successful fight to install local campaigner Janet Daby as the party's candidate to replace Heidi Alexander MP in next month's by-election, fending off bids by hard-left hopefuls in an all-woman shortlist. A former adviser to John Prescott, he was a key figure in the selection battle on Saturday that saw Mr Corbyn's leftwing choice for the ultra-safe seat being outvoted Supporters claimed the tweets from Mr McKenzie's Twitter account had been unearthed to discredit him. Leftwing commentator Owen Jones republished the posts on his own account, leading to a frenzied war of words on social media.

The party confirmed today that the senior Labour activist had been suspended.

Mr McKenzie spent this morning tweeting that he had no idea what was happening, before the party officially informed him of the decision in an email sent at 9.25am.

He wrote: "I now know what the issue is and will clarify my position as soon as I can. Thank you to everyone who is sending private or public messages of support. …

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