UK’s Lord Kilclooney calls Kamala Harris ‘the Indian’, sparks outrage - EasternEye

UK’s Lord Kilclooney calls Kamala Harris ‘the Indian’, sparks outrage

Lord Kilclooney
Lord Kilclooney

A MEMBER of the House of Lords has been called on to apologise after referring to the US vice-president-elect as ‘the Indian’ in a tweet.

Lord Kilclooney has been told to apologise for referring to Kamala Harris as ‘the Indian’.

“What happens if Biden moves on and the Indian becomes President. Who then becomes Vice President?” he tweeted.

The Speaker of the Lords, Norman Fowler, demand John Kilclooney retract his remarks about Kamala Harris.

“Lord Kilclooney should retract and apologise,” said Fowler. “This is an offensive way to refer to anyone, let alone a woman who has just made history. The comment is entirely unacceptable and has no place in British politics. I could not be clearer.”

Harris made history last week by becoming the first female, first black and Asian-American person to be elected to the role of US vice-president.

Labour’s Lords leader, Angela Smith, said she would be making an official complaint. “I am so angry about this comment. It is despicable and beneath contempt and totally unacceptable from anyone – but especially from someone in parliament.”

MPs and public figures condemned the tweet as racist. The shadow justice secretary, David Lammy, said: “She is called Kamala Harris. Please send this awful comment straight back to the dark ages.”

Meanwhile, the 82-year-old Lord Kilclooney claimed he had not “known her name yet” and denied it was racist.

“Whilst Biden is proud to be Irish and Harris is rightly proud of her Indian background I certainly withdraw my reference to her as an Indian as it seems to have upset some people,” he tweeted. “I did not know her name and identified her with the term Indian. Most people understood. Racist NO.”

Later, he justified himself saying that he is ‘very fond of India’.  “I’m a member of the British India all-party group, I have two Indians (tenants) in my flats here in London and there’s nothing racist in it whatsoever,” he said.

He later tweeted: “I understand from the media that Speaker Fowler has criticised my tweet about the USA Presidency without having the courtesy of speaking to me beforehand. He is misinformed but I am not surprised!”

In 2018, Kilclooney was the subject of complaints after described Ireland’s then taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, a “typical Indian”, which he later said was a mistake.

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