FOLLOWING A SPEECH by UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman at the National Conservatism Conference in London this week, the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has asked if it is time for the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to examine the Conservative Party’s “persistent drive towards division and discrimination”.

The MCB released the following statement on 17 May 2023:

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) today called on the Conservative Party to take firm action against the radical right-wing extremism that is now infecting its ranks.

This manifested itself this week with the Home Secretary Suella Braverman endorsing the hard-right polemicist Douglas Murray during her speech at the National Conservativism Conference. Murray’s shocking views were on full display at the event with his statements on Germany and the two world wars, reducing the horrors of fascism and the Holocaust to a “muck up”.

Douglas Murray’s record of hate is well documented. In a 2006 speech, he infamously declared “conditions for Muslims in Europe must be made harder across the board”, called Islam an “opportunist infection”, Muslims a “demographic time bomb”, and that mosques should be “pulled down.” So extreme are Murray’s views, that the Conservative party has previously broken off relations with him.

The Home Secretary also doubled down on her demonising of an entire ethnic group by asserting grooming gangs were over represented by British men of Pakistani descent, even though the Home Office’s own report found no evidence of this.

The National Conservatism Conference has form in courting controversy by inviting far-right figures, so much so that in 2020, the Conservative Party censured one of its MPs for attending. Now, three years later, the Home Secretary, former Cabinet ministers and Conservative MPs are actively participating, endorsing the forum’s divisive messaging.

Coupled with the Conservative Party’s still unsatisfactory record in dealing with Islamophobia within  its rank and file, is it time for the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to take on its responsibilities. Is the body content with the Conservative Party’s persistent drive towards division and discrimination?

It is time for all of us, including Conservatives themselves, to stand and be counted against such alarmingly divisive voices.

* Source: Muslim Council of Britain