The Speaker
Monday, 20 May 2024 – 21:52

Lord Sheikh says complaints against him are ‘politically motivated’

Lord Sheikh, a Conservative peer has been accused of anti-Semitism for attending the same Palestinian rights conference as Jeremy Corbyn.

Lord Sheikh has stated that he feels that the accusations were motivated by the party’s disagreement with his views and criticisms on Boris Johnson and that they were motivated by Islamophobia.

This conference that he attended in 2014 was held in Tunisia.

This comes after Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, has been accused of being anti-Semitic on multiple occasions, one of which was his attendance of the wreath laying ceremony in Tunisia that year as well.

For this, Mr Corbyn was criticised for commemorating the terrorists of Black September, who killed 11 at the Munich Olympics in 1972.

Conservative MPs Robert Hafton and Zac Goldsmith criticised the fact that Sheikh had breached the party’s code of conduct. Mr Goldsmith tweeted that Lord Sheikh should be expelled.

Both Tory MPs sent the following in a letter to the Conservative party board:

“We cannot, as a party, rightly and robustly criticise the leader of the opposition for his attendance at this conference while allowing the attendance of a Conservative peer at the same event to pass without comment or complaint. To do so would be to indulge in hypocrisy and double standards.”

On Thursday, Lord Sheikh stated that he was not indeed anti-Semitic and that he had been targeted by Tory MPs because he was a Muslim. He also believes that  this follows his criticisms of Boris Johnson’s latest issue, the controversial statements that were made with regards to the burka.

Goldsmith, being a close friend of Johnson’s, had defended his burka jibes which compared Muslim women to “letter boxes” and “bank robbers”.

When Mr Goldsmith stood for mayor of London against Sadiq Khan, he had also been accused for spreading Muslim hate as part of his strategy. Johnson’s burka jibes were also seen by many as an attempt to increase his chances of winning the position of leader of the Conservatives by taking advantage of widespread anti-Muslim feeling within the party.

On BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on Thursday, Lord Sheikh stated:

“I Think complaints against me are politically motivated, I think the complaint against me is totally trivial and I think these people, whoever are trying to complain against me, are perhaps doing this because I have talked about what Boris Johnson has said being wrong.
I was very surprised about the fact that Zac Goldsmith has made the complaint. When Zac Goldsmith was standing for mayor at the election, he made some unsavoury remarks about Sadiq Khan and that campaign backfired and I feel Zac Goldsmith should have learnt following his failure to be elected mayor of London.”

He also mentioned that he attended the conference in order to talk about the Arab Spring and other settlements in Palestine.


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