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Sports Craig Whittaker: MP defends saying some Muslims not taking covid seriously

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Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionTory MP Craig Whittaker responds to criticism over BAME coronavirus commentsA Tory MP has defended his claim that some Muslims in West Yorkshire are not taking the pandemic seriously.Craig Whittaker said the "vast majority" of those breaking the rules in his constituency were from black and minority…
Sports Craig Whittaker: MP defends saying some Muslims not taking covid seriously

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Media captionTory MP Craig Whittaker responds to criticism over BAME coronavirus comments

A Tory MP has defended his relate that some Muslims in West Yorkshire are no longer taking the pandemic seriously.

Craig Whittaker talked about the “large majority” of these breaking the rules in his constituency were from dim and minority ethnic (BAME) communities.

Tory discover about Baroness Warsi referred to as his comments “divisive nonsense” and Labour talked about they were “openly racist”.

But Mr Whittaker talked about he would continue to discuss out to strive to pause extra deaths in BAME communities.

The row got right here as restrictions on social contacts between households all the contrivance in which thru West Yorkshire, Higher Manchester and parts of Lancashire were re-imposed in accordance to a upward push in infections.

Mr Whittaker’s Calder Valley seat used to be one among the areas tormented by the current measures, launched at fast view on Thursday night.

The MP told LBC radio there had been “sections of the neighborhood which will most certainly be no longer taking the pandemic seriously”. When requested if he used to be talking about the Muslim neighborhood, he spoke back: “Needless to claim.”

He went on to claim he used to be talking particularly about the speak in his constituency, notably in three wards in Halifax where there used to be a excessive share of Asian residents, or properties of multiple occupancy.

“When you happen to guage at the areas where we’ve considered rises and cases, the huge majority, nonetheless no longer by any stretch of the creativeness all areas, it’s far the BAME communities which will most certainly be no longer taking this seriously ample.”

Requested to define his comments in an interview with the BBC, Mr Whittaker talked about he used to be basing them on data from the UK’s test and hint system for an infection rates within the borough of Calderdale.

“The evidence is that we’ve three communities internal Calderdale – and we’ve to guage and show off that we’re wrathful by these areas,” he talked about.

“But we even have to relieve these communities to make certain we assemble no longer have extra deaths”.

Sports ‘Perfect conversations’

The MP talked about he had obtained “abhor mail” nonetheless stood by his remarks, pronouncing “unless we discuss these devices openly… colorful conversations” wouldn’t be possible about the actions needed to pause a resurgence of the virus.

“As a consequence of I am white attain I no longer teach these devices? I am no longer going to easily be peaceful because some folk assemble no longer fancy what I even have talked about,” he added in an interview with BBC Yorkshire’s Political Editor James Vincent.

His remarks introduced about a backlash from Labour MPs representing seats within the home.

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Huddersfield’s Barry Sheerman talked about the frequent flouting of the rules he had witnessed had “nothing to attain with religion”.

“If Craig Whittaker joined me in walking previous pubs, as I even have performed within the previous few days, and also you assemble no longer judge many Muslims in pubs, he would judge they are paunchy of folk internal and outdoor completely disobeying the social distancing rules,” he talked about.

“I even have considered mischievous folk breaking the rules of every creed, bustle and religion.”

And Tracy Brabin, Labour MP for Batley and Spen, talked about the comments were “no longer precious”, notably since ethnic minority communities had suffered disproportionately from the virus.

Labour’s shadow equalities spokeswoman Marsha de Cordova entreated High Minister Boris Johnson to sentence what she referred to as the “disgraceful” and “overly racist” comments and to “take jog” against Mr Whittaker.

Broken-down Tory chairwoman Baroness Warsi, who used to be the UK’s first Muslim cupboard minister, talked about the MP looked as if it would be singling out BAME teams when there had been many others who had extra clearly transgressed.

She tweeted: “There are some folks who don’t appear to be taking lockdown seriously eg seaside followers, pub goers, unlawful ravers, anti face cowl protestors, football cup snatch celebrators and heaps others.

“Will we now categorise all by bustle? So white tan seekers vs BAME folks in Craig’s world? This divisive nonsense must.”

Requested about Mr Whittaker’s comments at a press conference in Downing Street, High Minister Boris Johnson talked about faith leaders had a the largest role to play in making certain all sections of the neighborhood follow the rules.

“I’ve to thank your complete neighborhood leaders, I’ve to thank the mosques and the imams who have labored onerous with us to procure message all the contrivance in which thru.

“But sooner or later it’s as a lot as your complete nation to procure this ethical and accomplish it together.”

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