A Blackburn with Darwen councillor has been suspended by the Labour Party for sharing an anti-Israel post on social media.

Cllr Mohammed Irfan, who represents Billinge and Beardwood for Labour, was told of the decision this week.

It follows a post in which he asked whether the Pakistani Army ‘could join the war to help Palestine’.

Leader of the Labour-run Blackburn with Darwen Council Cllr Phil Riley confirmed Cllr Irfan had been suspended and an investigation will now take place.

He will continue to sit as an independent while the investigation takes place.

Cllr Irfan, had shared a post by another user which read: “Wall-to-wall coverage of Israelis experiencing for a few hours what Palestinians have continuously experienced decade after decade is incredibly telling about the discrepancy in the value of human life in our corporate news.” 

This comment has remained on the page.

Cllr Irfan, then shared and liked a post which read: “Will the Pakistani army join the war to help Palestine?

“Israel will now attack Palestine using today’s event as an excuse, Palestine needs our army of this Imam Mehdi’s army.”

The post was construed as calling for the Pakistani army to fight alongside Hamas, which is a proscribed terrorist organisation in the UK.

Presently, a person could be jailed for maximum of 14 years in prison and/or face a fine for expressing support for the group.

In recent days, nationally the Labour Party has been largely united in condemning Hamas.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said he has been “shocked and appalled by events in Israel”.

He said: “I utterly condemn the senseless murder of men, women and children – including British citizens – in cold blood by the terrorists of Hamas.” 

His comments on LBC where he said ‘Israel has the right’ to withhold power and water from Palestinian civilians, was criticised by some Labour party members.

This action by Israel, depriving innocent civilians of basic needs, has been called out as a breach of international law by some.

It comes after Home Secretary Suella Braverman wrote to police chiefs this week saying that waving a Palestinian flag and chanting pro-Arab songs could amount to a public order offence if it could be deemed to be in support of atrocities.

Since violence erupted in Israel and Gaza earlier this week, triggered by Hamas fighters killing hundreds of people in Israel and taking a number of hostages, at least 2,300 people have been killed on both sides, including hundreds of Israeli and Palestinian children.

Cllr Irfan has been contacted for comment.