Former London mayor Ken Livingstone has decided to leave the Labour Party after he had been suspended from it due to making controversial remarks, which have sparked an anti-Semitism scandal.
"After much consideration, I have decided to resign from the Labour Party," according to a statement issued by Livingstone on his website.
"The ongoing issues around my suspension from the Labour Party have become a distraction," the statement reads.
Back in April 2016, Livingstone suggested that Adolf Hilter had used to support Zionism, earning an 11-month suspension pending results of a probe by the party’s disciplinary panel, which halted his membership for two years.
The Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, accused the the party's longtimer, in a statement, of "bringing the party into disrepute" and criticized Livingstone for continuing to make offensive remarks which "could open him to further disciplinary action."
The UK Labour Party has been dealing with allegations of anti-Semitism for a few years. An inquiry chaired by lawyer Shami Chakrabarti reported in June 2016 that anti-Semitism and other types of racism were occasionally present within the party. The Labour leader later stated that anti-Semitism was "a poison" and promised to fight against this form of prejudice both in the country and within the party itself. He also said that the party would launch a political education program to enhance party members' awareness of the nature of anti-Semitism as well as ways of countering the phenomenon.