• Thursday, July 18, 2024


MP accuses Starmer of ignoring Muslim voters

Labour MP Apsana Begum claimed the Prime Minister failed to “assure British Muslims he was listening” to their frustrations

Labour MP Apsana Begum, who won from Poplar and Limehouse, claims the Prime Minister has failed to assure British Muslims he was listening to their frustrations.

By: Shajil Kumar

AN ASIAN-ORIGIN Labour MP has criticised Sir Keir Starmer for his failure to address the concerns of Muslim voters about his record on the Gaza crisis, The Telegraph reports.

Apsana Begum, who won from Poplar and Limehouse, claimed the Prime Minister failed to “assure British Muslims he was listening” to their frustrations.

The Left-wing Labour MP said that the prime minister in a TV interview refused to acknowledge that he had a problem at hand and kept harping on the ‘strong mandate’ the Labour party got in the July 4 election.

During an interview with ITV News, Starmer was asked if he was concerned about losing support in areas with a high Muslim population.

He sidestepped the issue and kept dwelling upon the Labour party winning people’s mandate.

When pressed on the issue of trust with British Muslims, he said: “Well, we’ve got a strong mandate, of course where we didn’t secure the votes we’ll address that. But I don’t think there’s any disputing the strength of the mandate that we have.”

Apsana said Starmer’s response did not acknowledge the need to build trust amongst British Muslims who feel that Labour has let them down.

She said a lot of voters have serious concerns about Starmer’s record on Gaza, Islamophobia and immigration. He lost an opportunity to address their concerns, she added.

The Gaza conflict has proved divisive for Labour, and Starmer has been facing criticism for his initial refusal to back a ceasefire.

Apsana said Starmer’s infamous comments supporting Israel’s right to cut off electricity to Gaza had angered many erstwhile Labour voters.

During the recent election, Labour faced reverses in areas with a large Muslim population.

The party lost to four new independent MPs in Blackburn, Dewsbury and Batley, Birmingham Perry Barr and Leicester South. Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, a long-term supporter of the Palestinian cause, also defeated the official Labour candidate in Islington North.

Among the Labour losers included Jonathan Ashworth, the party’s former shadow paymaster general. He lost from Leicester South to independent candidate Shockat Adam, who dedicated his victory to the people of Gaza.

This group of five pro-Palestine MPs has effectively become the sixth-largest party in the Commons, on par with Reform UK and the Democratic Unionist Party.

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