Muslim Council of Britain call for inquiry into alleged Tory Islamophobia

Thursday, May 31, 2018

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has called for an independent inquiry into alleged Islamophobia within the Conservative Party.

In a letter to Tory chairman Brandon Lewis, the MCB highlighted a number of recent allegations which it said represented "the tip of the iceberg" of Islamophobic attitudes within the party.

In the letter, MCB general secretary Harun Khan said they were "more than weekly occurrences of Islamophobia" in April.

They ranged from allegedly offensive tweets to accusations of links to far-right figures.

Mr Khan also highlighted the campaign run by Zac Goldsmith in his unsuccessful bid to beat Labour's Sadiq Khan to become Mayor of London in 2016, saying there had been no action taken against those responsible for "shocking Islamophobia" during the campaign.

Mr Khan added: "We want all political parties to ensure that they are firm in their commitment against all forms of bigotry and discrimination.

"Our democracy should not be overshadowed by a divisive culture within political parties that scapegoats minorities and alienates some who share similar political positions."

Former Tory cabinet minister Baroness Warsi told the Independent a review was "long overdue".

Listen to former Labour advisor Kevin Meagher share his views on the letter to George Galloway on talkRADIO.

Lady Warsi, who earlier this year told MPs Islamophobia was widespread in the UK, said: "I have raised my concerns about Islamophobic comments and campaigning for more than two years and have done so formally and informally including a letter to the Prime Minister.

"The party has been aware of the issue at the highest level and has failed to take the issue seriously and at times even denied its very existence.

"A formal inquiry is now long overdue and I hope my party send a very clear message by establishing this inquiry that bigotry will not be tolerated in a modern Conservative party."

A Conservative Party spokesman said: "We take all such incidents seriously, which is why we have suspended all those who have behaved inappropriately and launched immediate investigations."