A LABOUR Party candidate should face sanctions after admitting to engaging with social media posts describing Israel as a “so-called country”, campaigners have urged.

North Swindon MP hopeful Kate Linnegar has apologised for having liked or shared the Facebook posts in 2016, details of which were published by political gossip website Guido Fawkes.

Ms Linnegar, who is standing in the Penhill and Upper Stratton ward in the upcoming local elections, said: “I have since developed a deeper understanding about anti-Semitism and I would not have engaged with such posts today and I am deeply sorry for having done so.”

However, group Campaign Against Anti-Semitism said Ms Linnegar should be sanctioned by her party over the Facebook posts.

Joe Glasman, the group’s head of political campaigns, told the BBC: “She needs to be subject to a transparent disciplinary process and then sanctioned.”

He added: “For somebody in such a responsible position I think maybe one like could look unfortunate, but more than that could look like more than bad luck. Nobody can take that lightly from someone in a political position.”

Last month, screenshots were published by website Guido Fawkes apparently showing Ms Linnegar had “liked” a number of posts shared to the Swindon People’s Assembly Facebook page.

They included one post linking to an article entitled “How Israel lobby manufactured UK Labour Party’s anti-Semitism crisis.”

Another described Israel as a “so-called country”. It added: “If you compare the Israeli government to Hitler you will see Hitler killed so many innocent people and the majority of them were Jews. The Israeli government has killed and is still killing a lot of people and the majority of them are Muslim.”

The Labour Party has faced allegations in recent years that members of the leadership are anti-Semitic. General Secretary of the party Jennie Formby said in February she had strengthened disciplinary procedures for dealing with such claims, with allegations dealt with more rapidly.

Last summer, Ms Linnegar was understood to have been investigated and cleared by the Labour Party’s National Executive Committee. It was alleged she had shared social media posts that talked of “Holocaust-mongers” and another defending Jackie Walker, who was stripped of her Labour membership over anti-Semitism accusations

Ms Linnegar said: “I fully support efforts to foster greater awareness about anti-Semitism and ensure more people can identify offensive online material, call it out, challenge and confront it, so we can root anti-Semitism out of our party and our society.”

The Labour Party said Ms Linnegar was committed to tackling anti-Semitism within her own party and in society at large.