Britain’s security services investigated Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn for alleged links to convicted IRA terrorists when he was a backbench MP, the Telegraph has revealed.
M15 considered Mr. Corbyn, an ardent supporter of a “united Ireland”, a potential threat to national security when they opened a file on him in the early 1990s.
The hard left leader allegedly shared a platform with killers and had links to bomb makers.
Furthermore, John McDonnell, Labour’s “Marxist” shadow chancellor, once boasted that the pair of them used to “pin people against the wall” in the Commons to lobby them on behalf of Ireland.
According to the paper, Mr. Corbyn supported one of the Balcombe Street gang, which waged a 14-month bombing campaign, and also had links to a bombmaker believed to have been behind the Hyde Park and Regents Park attacks.
An intelligence source said: “If there was a file on someone, it meant they had come to notice. We opened a temporary file and did a preliminary investigation. It was then decided whether we should open a permanent file on them.”
A file would be opened on “someone who sympathises with a certain group, or is friends with a specific person” and the purpose was to “assess whether the person was a threat”, the source added.
Left-wing supporters of Mr. Corbyns far-left takeover of the Labour party were quick to label the claims a smear.
Yay! It’s ‘MI5 smear day’ and still 2 weeks of the campaign to go. Subtext: ‘Elite terrified of Labour poll surge’ https://t.co/KhAsqgpl57
— Paul Mason (@paulmasonnews) May 20, 2017
Responding to the claims, a spokesman for Mr. Corbyn said: “MI5 kept files on many peace and Labour movement campaigners at the time, including anti-Apartheid activists and trade unionists.
“Jeremy campaigned for peace in Northern Ireland. To do so, he campaigned for the rights of all to be respected and spoke to people on all sides of the conflict.
“Jeremy campaigned for fair trials and against miscarriages of justice, after a series of well-publicised cases, such as the Guildford Four and the Birmingham Six.”
The spokesman added: “John and Jeremy do not pin people to walls. This is clearly figurative language.”
With Jeremy Corbyn & the comrades @ Portcullis House, Westminster. pic.twitter.com/A6Vgmaglsa
— Gerry Adams (@GerryAdamsSF) July 21, 2015
During the troubles, Mr. Corbyn frequently appeared at Republican events, including those honouring dead terrorists. Last year, he refused to explicitly condemn the IRA during a telephone interview with BBC Radio Ulster.
When asked if he condemned the terror group, he replied: “I condemn all bombing, it is not a good idea, and it is terrible what happened.”
The Telegraph unearthed reports in a Sinn Fein newspaper claimed Mr. Corbyn once shared a platform with an IRA volunteer who was wanted over the killing of an SAS soldier.
In 1987, he handed a petition to then-prime minister Margaret Thatcher demanding better visiting conditions for terrorist Hugh Doherty, the member of the Balcombe Street gang serving 11 life sentences.
He also allegedly supported the cause of Dessie Ellis, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison on explosives charges in the 1980s.
The future Labour leader even invited Sinn Fein official Gerard McLochlainn into the heart of parliament, despite his alleged links to the IRA and accusation of bomb-making activity.