• Saturday, April 13, 2024

HEADLINE STORY

Braverman labels Tory Islamophobia row as ‘hysteria’, demands action

Braverman believes stripping Lee Anderson of his party privileges was an overreaction

Suella Braverman. (Photo by DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Pramod Thomas

FORMER home secretary Suella Braverman has denounced the ongoing controversy surrounding Islamophobia within the Tory party as “hysteria,” urging prime minister Rishi Sunak to address Islamist extremism promptly, reported The Telegraph.

Braverman believes stripping Lee Anderson, the former Tory party deputy chairman, of his party privileges was an overreaction to his claims about London mayor Sadiq Khan.

On Monday (26), Braverman urged Sunak to focus on tackling “Islamist extremism in the UK.”

“We need to urgently focus now on the big problem: how to tackle Islamist extremism in the UK. The hysteria in response to those calling out the crisis is one of the reasons why we’re not making progress,” she wrote on X.

“Language does matter but it’s time for resolute government action. Fixing Prevent as Sir William Shawcross recommends. I started this work. It needs to be completed. Passing a law that empowers ministers to take action against hateful marches. Properly holding the Police to account so they uphold the law without fear or favour.”

The dispute over Islamophobia allegations erupted last week when Braverman claimed “Islamists, extremists, and anti-Semites” are now in charge in the country.

Meanwhile, Sunak cautioned against shutting down discussions on the Israel-Hamas conflict but didn’t label Anderson’s remarks as Islamophobic.

Although Labour and the Liberal Democrats urged Sunak to denounce Anderson’s comments as Islamophobic, the government prefers the term “anti-Muslim hatred.”

Anderson refused to retract his claims, asserting it would show weakness. While some Tory MPs criticised Anderson’s comments, others called for a broader debate on Islamist extremism.

In an interview, Anderson referenced areas in London and Birmingham with large Muslim populations, sparking debate. He said that certain individuals misuse religious doctrine to create ‘no-go’ zones in these areas, which is not in line with true Islamic teachings.

His remarks were swiftly condemned as Islamophobic, with calls for an apology from various quarters.

Ali Milani, the head of the Labour Muslim Network, quickly criticised his remarks as Islamophobic, stating that there are “no Muslim ‘no-go’ areas in this country”.

Andy Street, the Tory mayor of West Midlands, called on those in Westminster to cease making baseless accusations. Meanwhile, Jess Phillips, a Labour representative from Birmingham, demanded an apology for the remarks, particularly as her constituency encompasses part of the Sparkhill area.

The Islamophobia row has also raised questions about handling disagreements over Israel and Gaza, with MPs facing intense scrutiny.

In an interview, Sunak discussed worries that protests supporting Palestine had made the situation chaotic in Parliament.

The prime minister acknowledged concerns about intimidating actions affecting politicians’ ability to express their views.

He criticised aggressive tactics like targeting MPs’ homes as “incredibly” frustrating and un-British. He also warned hostile protesters that breaking the law would result in severe consequences.

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