Home Business News Sunak says Anderson’s comments that ‘Islamists have control of our country’ were ‘wrong’

Sunak says Anderson’s comments that ‘Islamists have control of our country’ were ‘wrong’

26th Feb 24 10:46 am

The Prime Minister has said that Lee Anderson’s comments that “Islamists have got control of our country” and they have “control” over Sadiq Khan was “wrong.”

Anderson’s remarks has sparked an Islamophobia argument “weren’t acceptable, they were wrong,” said Rishi Sunak.

After failing to apologise Anderson lost the Conservative whip over the weekend after blaming the Mayor of London that “people are turning up in their thousands” which “stems from Khan.”

On Friday Anderson prompted fury after he said, “I don’t actually believe that the Islamists have got control of our country, but what I do believe is they’ve got control of Khan and they’ve got control of London, and they’ve got control of Starmer as well.”

The Tory deputy chairman later added, “People are just turning up in their thousands, and doing anything they want, and they are laughing at our police.

“This stems with Khan, he’s actually given our capital city away to his mates.”

On Monday Sunak told local BBC radio stations during a visit to North Yorkshire, “I think it’s incumbent on all of us, especially those elected to Parliament, not to inflame our debates in a way that’s harmful to others.

“Lee’s comments weren’t acceptable, they were wrong. And that’s why he had the whip suspended.”

Sunak added, “Clearly his choice of words wasn’t acceptable, it was wrong.”

“Words matter, especially in the current environment where tensions are running high and I think it’s incumbent on all of us to choose them carefully.”

The Prime Minister was asked if the Tory Party has an Islamophobia problem, he said, “No, of course it doesn’t.”

Sunak said it is “not a fair characterisation at all” to say he has condemned antisemitism whilst overlooking Islamophobia in the Conservative Party.

Sunak said, “Racism or prejudice of any kind” is “completely unacceptable” and this is “not British.”

Labour chairwoman Anneliese Dodds said condemned Anderson’s “appalling” remarks, she said they were “clearly not to do with who Sadiq Khan is, it was a slur that was directed at him because of Islamophobia.”

“This isn’t something that popped up five minutes ago, it is a continuing concern,” Dodds told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

Liberal Democrat deputy leader Daisy Cooper said, “Rishi Sunak needs to condemn Anderson’s comments for what they are, Islamophobic and racist, and make clear he won’t be let back into the Conservative Party.”

Tory former minister Baroness Warsi, has previously urged the Prime Minister to “call out anti-Muslim racism.”

Baroness Warsi said on Monday that the Government are “dragg(ing) its heels on any work to tackle this form of racism.”

She wrote on X, “No new initiatives, no engagement with communities, no definition. Instead culture wars, othering and blatant anti-Muslim racism.”

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