Watchdog urged to investigate ‘Islamophobia crisis’ in Tory Party

Friday, March 6, 2020

The Conservative Party has been accused of responding to claims of Islamophobia with “denial, dismissal and deceit” with allegations being made against more than 300 people.

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) is urging the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to investigate and take “swift action”.

It sent the watchdog a dossier containing claims against MPs, party members, councillors and advisers to Boris Johnson, as well as reiterating allegations of Islamophobia against the Prime Minister.

MCB spokesman Miqdaad Versi told talkRADIO Islamophobia was an “institutional problem”.

“The first approach by the Conservative party was to dismiss anyone who brought anything up, then deny there's a problem in the first place and actually deceive the public,” he told Julia Hartley-Brewer.

Mr Versi said the MCB did not believe the Conservatives had been “taking it seriously”, adding “only when things are made public does apparent action happen, so we have so many cases where in private things are raised, nothing happened”.

The MCB represents mosques, schools and charitable associations – its secretary general Harun Khan echoed the thoughts of Mr Versi, saying “There is no doubt that the Conservative Party has an Islamophobia crisis.”

However, a Conservative spokeswoman insisted the party has a “robust approach to discrimination of any kind” and said it “consistently takes decisive action” to deal with incidents of hatred.

She said: “We are holding an independent review which is looking at how we can improve our processes, to make sure that any instances are isolated, and that there are thorough processes in place to stamp them out as and when they occur.”

The party has committed to an inquiry into all forms of discrimination within the party but have resisted calls to launch an investigation into Islamophobia specifically.

The PM has insisted the party has a “zero-tolerance approach” to Islamophobia.

Read more

Boris Johnson sorry for ‘hurt and offence’ from Tory Islamophobia

Boris Johnson dismisses criticism of Tory handling of Islamophobia

talkRADIO: Listen live