Islamophobic? Not us, says UKIP MEP

Nigel FarageUK Independence Party MEP Nigel Farage has threatened to sue over Tory leader David Cameron’s claim that UKIP contains “closet racists”. According to the Guardian, Farage cited the recent expulsion of four Italian Northern League MEPs from UKIP’s grouping in the European parliament after one of the League’s leaders wore a t-shirt printed with cartoons satirising the prophet Muhammad. Farage said: ‘We thought the Italian Northern League were OK. But they have become Islamaphobic to an extent we find unsettling … We adopt a firm line on immigration and asylum. But you haven’t got to be racist to do that’.”

This would be the same Nigel Farage who, according to former UKIP leader Alan Sked, rejected the inclusion of a statement on the party’s membership form opposing discrimination against minorities. “We will never win the nigger vote”, Sked quotes Farage as saying. “The nig-nogs will never vote for us.” As for anti-Muslim bigotry, former UKIP member Aidan Rankin has recounted his disillusionment with the party: “I listened, with increasing loathing, to a repertoire of anti-Muslim barbs from people who knew nothing whatsoever about Islam and were proud of their ignorance…. Islamophobia pervades its internal dialogue.”