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Thousands sign petition supporting tube driver suspended over ‘free Palestine’ chant

A PETITION has been launched to support a London Tube driver who was suspended for leading a Palestine chant. 

On Saturday, a driver chanted “Free, free” over the train’s speaker system, to which the passengers responded “Palestine.”

A video of the chant, which was positively received by passengers, was posted on social media as thousands marched through the capital protesting at Israel’s bombardment of Gaza. 

The driver finished the chant with “hope you all have a blessed day” and told passengers to “keep all those people in your prayers.”

The driver’s peaceful act of solidarity however resulted in suspension from his job on Monday.

The British Transport Police has confirmed it is also “investigating” the incident.

Glynn Barton, TfL’s chief operating officer, said: “A driver has now been identified and suspended while we continue to fully investigate the incident in line with our policies and procedures.”

The suspension prompted an online backlash. MP Diane Abbott wrote on X: “Would this have happened if he was chanting ‘Free Ukraine’?”

Meanwhile a petition calling on the TfL to reconsider disciplinary action gathered over 63,000 signatures as the Morning Star went to press.

Finn Brennan, full-time organiser on London Underground for the train drivers’ union Aslef, said: “We are aware that a Tube train driver has been suspended while an investigation takes place.

“The involvement of the police in this matter is a ridiculous over-reaction to something that should clearly be dealt with internally by Transport for London in line with normal procedures.”

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