Munich attack widow: Jeremy Corbyn must apologise for laying wreath

(Wednesday, August 15, 2018) 10:38

Ankie Spitzer, whose husband died in 1972, rebukes the Labour leader amid controversy about a wreath-laying trip to Tunisia.

The widow of one of the victims of the Munich Olympics terror attack has accused Jeremy Corbyn of hypocrisy and has demanded he apologise.

Ankie Spitzer's husband Andrei, a fencing coach, was murdered at the 1972 games by Palestinian terrorists.

"Imagine when an Israeli politician would go and put flowers on the graves of those murderers that killed people in London or England - how would the British people accept that," she said. "They would not accept, so we don't accept this behaviour."

It comes after pictures surfaced at the weekend of Mr Corbyn attending a memorial service in Tunis where a wreath was laid for terrorists suspected of being behind the attack.

Andre Spitzer was killed at the 1972 Olympics in Munich
Image:
Andre Spitzer was killed at the 1972 Olympics in Munich
The Labour leader admitted on Monday that "I was present when it was laid, I don't think I was actually involved in it".

The attack in 1972 in Munich is still remembered in Israel as a national trauma.

Eleven Israelis were taken hostage by the Black September terror group, two were murdered in the Olympic village.

The nine others were executed at the airport as the terrorists tried to escape.

Jeremy Corbyn holds a wreath at the ceremony. Pic: Embassy of Palestine in Tunisia
Image:
Jeremy Corbyn holds a wreath at the ceremony. Pic: Embassy of Palestine in Tunisia
Until now, the wreath-laying ceremony in Tunis and allegations of anti-Semitism surrounding Mr Corbyn have been a marginal issue in Israel.

But with the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu intervening on Twitter, calling for "unequivocal condemnation" that is no longer the case.

Ankie Spitzer said Mr Corbyn should apologise for the offence he has caused to all of the families of the victims.

Corbyn was present at wreath-laying memorial 3:01
Video:
Corbyn was present at wreath-laying memorial
"He doesn't have to come to apologise to me," she said. "He should apologise to the victims of terror. And that's what he said - 'I want to honour the victims of terror'.

"Where were you? Did you ever come to the graves of my husband, or to other terror victims? We never saw you Mr Corbyn."

The Labour leader said the ceremony in Tunis was for Palestinian victims of an Israeli air strike and that it had nothing to do with honouring terrorists.

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Corbyn fans: Wreath row a 'smear' and 'smokescreen'
But that version of events is not accepted by most people in Israel.

And what was a domestic political issue for Mr Corbyn has now taken on an international dimension.