Westminster Declaration gets support from far right party

By Jonathan Bartley
April 22, 2010

Fourteen members of the right-wing United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) have signed a declaration produced by conservative church leaders in the UK for the general election.

The Westminster Declaration, published last month, has been interpreted as marking the emergence of a "fairly coherent rightwing bloc" in British Christianity. The endorsement of so many UKIP candidates appears to confirm this view.

UKIP, although not racist, has similar policies to the BNP and demands a freeze on immigration.

The fact that so many candidates from the party can happily sign the declaration, should give those who produced it, and those Christians who have supported it, pause for thought. In particular what - if anything - is it that makes the declaration distinctively 'Christian'? (And by 'Christian' I don't mean narrow religious self-interest, but rather the transforming message of the Gospel).

The declaration has a very narrow policy focus, and is notably weak on the issue on migration and asylum, stating support only for those “appropriately seeking asylum”.

About 114 candidates standing in the election have signed it.

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