Vanessa Beeley made the comment in a tweet almost a year after Cox’s death, and has also written that “Zionists rule France”.
Beeley is a blogger who has gained notoriety over the last few years for her uncritical accounts of her Syrian regime-run trips to the country.
She has written that the White Helmets, the volunteer group that rescues people from the rubble of Syria’s civil war, is a terrorist-linked organisation that fakes its activities to elicit sympathy in the West for a regime change plot against Syrian leader, Bashar al-Assad.
Beeley supports the Assad government’s contention that there was no popular revolution in Syria in 2011 and that civilians and humanitarian workers in rebel-held areas are “terrorists” and “legitimate targets”.
@witayim blocked long ago :-) Douma is a terrorist nest. White Helmets partner terrorists. Legit targets.— vanessa beeley (@VanessaBeeley) October 30, 2015
Mother-of-two Cox died in 2016 after she was attacked in her Batley and Spen constituency by far-right extremist Thomas Mair. He was jailed for life for her murder.
Williamson’s praise of Beeley comes amid ongoing accusations of anti-Semitism in sections of the Labour Party. The president of the JewishBoard of Deputies has said its leader, Jeremy Corbyn, is “leading the party into a dark place of ugly conspiracy theories”.
Beeley also believes the attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo was staged and al-Qaeda wasn’t behind the 9/11 attacks, has shared platforms with Holocaust-deniers and is also used by the Assad regime to give talks to other people partaking in propaganda tours of the country.
Williamson is a former shadow minister and was considered a close ally of Corbyn. However, his resignation from the front bench after controversially appearing to suggest that top council tax rates should be doubled was widely considered to be a mutual decision with the leadership.
His latest tweet drew swift condemnation.
Really a lot of Labour's issues could be sorted out if there was just a no-conspiracy-theory clause in the rulebook. https://t.co/B1G773Sunr— David Baddiel (@Baddiel) August 20, 2018
She’s Assad’s very own Alex Jones. And you’re an absolute disgrace. https://t.co/gjEdYFUd3t— James O'Brien (@mrjamesob) August 19, 2018
Mr Williamson, aren't you ashamed to say: 'a privilege to hear' someone who admits Assad's systematic torture, & relies on coerced testimonies to spread regime's & Russian lies. Why not talk to Syrian refugees in your constituency instead of foolishly listening to a propagandist?— Maher Barotchi (@MaherBarotchi) August 20, 2018
A spokesperson for the Labour Party told HuffPost UK they are looking into Williamson’s tweet.
Chris Williamson has been contacted for comment.
Beeley, 53, is the daughter of the late British diplomat Sir Harold Beeley, and worked in various sales and management roles in the plastics industry before turning to activism in 2012.
Her writings have been heavily promoted by the Russian government and military as part of their ongoing propaganda campaign relating to the Syrian conflict, of which they are one of the main belligerents.
A group of UK academics has also endorsed Beeley’s work, drawing accusations of pushing pro-Assad propaganda, “peddling conspiracy theories” and “whitewashing” war crimes.
More than 500,000 people have been killed in Syria as a result of the war, and one project established with the aim of documenting them all is the Violations Documentation Centre (VDC).
The VDC has documented 188,957 deaths so far, two thirds of them civilians. Its records indicate 77 percent were likely killed in contravention of humanitarian law by the Assad regime.
Opposition groups account for 12 percent, 4 percent by Islamic State and Al Nusra Front, 3 percent by the Russians, and 1.4 percent by the US-led international coalition.