A third Haringey councillor has quit the Labour Party as the backlash against the national leadership’s stance on the conflict in Israel and Gaza continues to grow.

Cllr Mary Mason, who represents Bounds Green ward, slammed Labour leader Keir Starmer’s failure to call for an immediate ceasefire and said she was unable to remain in a party that she claimed had not “remained firmly against flagrant violations of international law”.

Starmer, who is MP for Holborn and St Pancras, has faced mounting criticism for failing to back a ceasefire, despite a growing humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.

After he stated in an LBC interview that Israel had the right to do “everything that it can” to get hostages taken by Hamas back “safe and sound”, the party leadership has since maintained that Israel’s defence must be undertaken in accordance with international law.

In a statement issued following her resignation, however, Cllr Mason said: “The Labour Party led by Keir Starmer campaigned on a pledge not to support illegal wars and to put human rights at the heart of their foreign policy. This pledge has clearly been broken.

“The Labour Party has failed to call for an immediate ceasefire in support of the Palestinian people. They have not acted in accordance with international law and the Geneva (Human Rights) Convention.”

Ham & High: Cllr Mary MasonCllr Mary Mason

She added: “Today, it is not tenable for me to remain in a party which has not remained firmly against flagrant violations of international law and war crimes.

“Over 76% of the people in this country support a ceasefire, a position supported by trade unionists, international organisations, women’s organisations, and those who march on our streets and weep at home. A position opposed by the US, UK, and many European countries.”

Cllr Mason continued: “More than 9,000 people have died, over 85% of them Palestinian and over 40% children and many more will never recover physically or mentally. Women are holding their children as they die, writing their names on their bodies, so they can be identified. Any opportunity for a world built on justice, dialogue, and coexistence, slips away as each family member dies.”

Cllr Mason will continue to serve Bounds Green as an independent councillor. Her colleagues Mark Blake and Lotte Collett, who also quit the Labour Party over the leadership’s stance on the conflict, are also now serving as independents.

In a speech delivered on Tuesday (31st October), the Labour Party leader said he understood calls for a ceasefire but did not believe that it was currently the “correct position”.

Starmer said a ceasefire “would leave Hamas with the infrastructure and the capability to carry out the sort of attack we saw on October 7”.

He added that 'humanitarian pauses' - backed by the UK and US governments - were "the only credible approach" to the urgent alleviation of Palestinian suffering.

Haringey Labour group said in a statement: “We are sad to see Cllr Mary Mason leave the Labour Party and Haringey Labour Group.

“The worsening humanitarian crisis and conflict continue to shock us all, and many of our residents are still living in unimaginable worry and grief at this challenging time.

“Our priority as a council is to continue to meet with and support our communities and stand united against any form of hatred, which has no place in Haringey or our society.”