Vote Labour at European elections to fight Farage's 'far-right poison', Corbyn says

  • Video report by ITV News Political Correspondent Libby Wiener

A vote for Labour is a vote against the "poison" of Nigel Farage, Jeremy Corbyn has said at the launch of his party's European election manifesto.

Speaking to an audience in Kent, Corbyn aimed to clear up his party's position on Brexit after being much-maligned by Farage and others for a lack of clarity on the issue, after several high-profile MPs have publicly backed a second referendum.

The Labour leader reiterated his party's general election manifesto pledge of respecting the result of the 2016 referendum - but said that the UK must remain in a Customs Union with the European Union to ensure job protection for UK workers.

Jeremy Corbyn was speaking at the launch of his party's European election manifesto. Credit: PA

Speaking at the launch on Thursday, Corbyn said: "These elections are also a chance to challenge the poison being peddled by the likes of Nigel Farage.

"He says Brexit is being blocked by the elite. It’s not true. The large majority of MPs have voted for a Brexit deal in one form or another."The Brexit party is in fact the No Deal party. And for millions, No Deal would mean no jobs. An economic shock threatening entire industries."

He continued: "It would be a Donald Trump Brexit leaving us at the mercy of a reckless and bellicose US administration.

"Nigel Farage’s Brexit is a Brexit for conspiracy theorists.

"For those who see Muslims and migrants or George Soros as the enemy.

"Only Labour can see off the Farage snake oil in this election."

Farage was launching his party's manifesto in Kent on Thursday morning. Credit: PA

On the prospect of another Brexit referendum, the Labour leader refused to rule out the idea, saying it could be used as a "healing process" to bring the country together.

He said: "I would want that to be seen as a healing process bringing this whole process to a conclusion.

"Nothing is easy in this, but, our essential message has to be to bring people together."

Moments after Corbyn's attack on Farage, the former Ukip leader claimed the Islington North MP was "rattled" and said "millions of Labour leave voters are being deceived".

In a wide-ranging speech which diverged from Brexit, Corbyn also took aim at the Government's austerity policies which he said had failed the country.

Corbyn said: "A vote for Labour is a vote to bring our divided country back together.

"Labour is the only party with a plan to unite our country to make it work for the many, not the few.

"We will end austerity invest in our economy and our communities and raise wages and living standards.

"Labour's alternative plan for Brexit which protects jobs, living standards and communities would end the chaos caused by the Conservatives and let us focus on the other big issues facing our country.

"It’s a real and credible plan that would allow the next Labour government to rebuild our manufacturing industries. And restore pride and prosperity to parts of our country that have been neglected for too long."