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The Labour MP for Rotherham will head an all-party panel, which also includes former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith.
The unprecedented inquiry, officially launched at a House of Commons reception last night, will consider evidence on the nature of contemporary anti-Semitism and consider further measures that could be introduced to confront the scourge.
Written submissions will be sought from interested parties, while oral evidence will also be given in parliament before the expected release of a report next Spring.
Dr MacShane said: “There is evidence that many British Jews are living with an unacceptable level of anxiety and discomfort as a result of a perceptible rise in anti-semitism.
“I hope that this group of distinguished parliamentarians produce a definitive report on the state of anti-semitism in the UK today so that positive steps can be taken to improve this situation.”Former Minister To Chair Hate Probe by Justin Cohen