UK By-Election: Pro-Palestine candidate George Galloway secures Rochdale seat with a landslide victory

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  • Galloway wins Rochdale seat by 12,335 votes  

ROCHDALE,United Kingdom – George Galloway, a left-wing politician and vocal critic of Israel, has won a stunning by-election victory in Rochdale, a northern English town with a large Muslim community. Galloway, who ran as a candidate for the Workers Party of Britain, defeated both the Labour and Conservative candidates by a huge margin, securing 12,335 votes to the 6,638 of his nearest rival, independent David Tully.

The Labour candidate, Azhar Ali, came a distant fourth after the party withdrew its backing over his anti-Israel remarks. The voter turnout was a low 39.7 percent. Galloway dedicated his win to the people of Gaza, who have suffered under a brutal Israeli assault that has killed more than 30,000 civilians in the last five months. He also slammed Labour leader Keir Starmer, who initially supported Israel’s right to self-defence and refused to demand a ceasefire. “Keir Starmer, this is for Gaza,” Galloway said on Friday. “You have played a shameful role in enabling, encouraging and covering up the massacre that is taking place in … in the Gaza Strip.” Galloway, who has been a British MP for seven different constituencies, campaigned on a pro-Palestinian platform, accusing both Labour and the Conservatives of being in the pocket of Israel. He also pledged to fight for local issues, such as restoring maternity services in Rochdale, a former industrial town that ranks among the most deprived areas in England. The by-election was triggered by the death of Labour MP Tony Lloyd in January.

Galloway’s victory exposes the deep divisions in Britain over Israel’s war on Gaza, which has sparked mass protests across the country. It also marks the first time that the Workers Party of Britain, a left-wing party founded by Galloway in 2019, will have a seat in parliament. Galloway vowed to use his parliamentary voice to challenge Labour’s stance on Gaza and to mobilise a movement for change. He said he had sent a message to Starmer that the political landscape had shifted. “The tectonic plates have moved tonight,” he said. “This is the beginning of a landslide, a movement, a shift in the plates.”