Suspended Plaid Cymru member apologises for anti-Semitic posts

image copyrightGetty Images
image captionPlaid Cymru suspended Sahar Al-Faifi on Sunday

A suspended Plaid Cymru member who appeared in a party election broadcast has apologised for making social media posts which she admitted crossed the boundary into anti-Semitism.

Sahar Al-Faifi said she regretted the messages she deleted five years ago.

Plaid Cymru announced an investigation into the activist's membership on Sunday, after the posts re-emerged.

Ms Al-Faifi said she has undertaken anti-Semitism training through the Board of Deputies of British Jews.

"Several years ago, I made a handful of social media posts that I regret deeply as they cross the boundary of criticism of Israel into anti-Semitism," she said.

"I deleted the tweets more than five years ago, and issued an apology to Jewish organisations and others.

"I have also undertaken anti-Semitism training, both formally through the Board of Deputies and informally with Jewish colleagues in order to ensure I never repeat the same mistakes.

"I am committed to working for a Wales safe and open to all, and free from any kind of discrimination or abuse."

She added: "As someone who has faced much abuse verbal and even physical, I know the importance of language and that the current political climate is one in which many minority groups - including Muslim women - face an impossible tidal wave of abuse, suspicion, and guilt, by simply being active in public life, all of which is most vitriolic online."

image copyrightTwitter | @Plaid_Cymru
image captionPlaid Cymru used a picture of Sahar Al Faifi to promote their broadcast

Plaid Cymru announced her suspension on Sunday.

Helen Mary Jones, Plaid Cymru AM for Mid and West Wales, told BBC Radio Wales' Breakfast programme that a disciplinary panel will look at the case.

She said: "We felt we had no choice but to suspend her because we have to send a clear message to the Jewish community that we won't tolerate anti-Semitism, just as we need to send clear messages to the Islamic community that we won't tolerate Islamophobia, and indeed to women that we won't tolerate the kind of misogyny that infects public life in Wales.

"We have to take a stand."

Ms Al-Faifi appeared in Plaid Cymru's party political broadcast for the general election, which aired on BBC Wales, ITV Wales and S4C on Thursday.

She has also appeared on broadcasts for BBC Wales discussing her faith.

Since the party election broadcast, she has been accused on social media of making anti-Semitic Facebook and Twitter comments between 2012 and 2014.

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