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Islam Slur Costs UK Councilor His Job

Published: 15/05/2013 04:18:26 PM GMT
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CAIRO - A British councilor has resigned his seat after sharing offensive materials about Muslims and their religion on the Facebook. It is with sadness that I am announcing my resignation as a councilor,” Eric Kitson, a m (more)

CAIRO - A British councilor has resigned his seat after sharing offensive materials about Muslims and their religion on the Facebook.

"It is with sadness that I am announcing my resignation as a councilor,” Eric Kitson, a member of the Worcestershire County Council, said in a statement cited by The Independent on Wednesday, May 15.

Kitson was elected to the Wyre Forest seat on May 2 after defeating his rivals from the three mainstream political groups.

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But the United Kingdom Independence Party (Ukip) member was forced to resign after he admitted that he shared offensive jobs and cartoons of Muslims on his Facebook page.

“I am extremely sorry to have let down my friends, the people in the hardworking Ukip team that got me elected, the people of Stourport on Seven who gave me the honor of electing and of course my family.”

The Ukip councilor has denied that he was a racist, arguing that he was sharing cartoons and jokes about Muslims to show how “disgusting” they were.

He has apologized for what he described as “stupid” behavior and has closed his Facebook page since.

"Like many people who are not professional politicians, I used my Facebook page as a general post board. That was foolish,” he said.

“I am no racist, but I can understand why people could think so."

British Muslims, estimated at nearly 2.7 million, have been in the eye of storm since the 7/7 2005 attacks.

A Financial Times opinion poll showed that Britain is the most suspicious nation about Muslims.

A poll of the Evening Standard found that a sizable section of London residents harbor negative opinions about Muslims.

Intolerance

Ukip party has welcomed the councilor's resignation.

"Ukip does not condone hate, racism or prejudice,” Bill Etheridge, the Ukip chairman for Dudley and Halesowen, said.

“We totally condemn those things because it's not what the party is about. In fact it is the total opposite of what the party is about."

He said the councilor's decision to quit his seat was right, adding that the party would also look into Kitson's membership.

"An investigation is taking place internally into the events and part of that investigation will consider his ongoing membership of the party,” he said.

"The party rules state that extreme views are not compatible so senior level head office members of the party will look at the facts of what has happened here and make their decision."

Party chairman Steve Crowther said his party was against any sort of racism or religious intolerance.

"His decision to resign is, under the circumstances, the right one,” he said.

“Ukip deplores racism or religious intolerance in any form, and this is a stark demonstration that people who are careless, unthinking or foolishly provocative in their online activity can both give great offence to others and severely damage themselves.

In Britain, far-right groups like Ukip, EDL and BNP have been playing the card of immigration to stoke sentiment against Muslims and immigrants.In November 2010, British police warned that the anti-Muslim demonstration by the EDL fuel extremism and harm social cohesion in Britain.

Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net




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