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Boris Johnson in the hot seat over Muslim veil 'letter box' comments

10 August 2018
Boris Johnson in the hot seat over Muslim veil 'letter box' comments

Former foreign secretary Boris Johnson will be investigated for a possible breach of the Conservative Party's code of conduct after making comments about Muslim women who wear burqas, a party source said on Thursday. Yet we have representatives of our governing party who think otherwise and who use Muslim women in order to pander to far-right Islamophobes within the party, as Boris Johnson has done.

A top Conservative known for flamboyant phrasing and eccentric stunts, Johnson is facing an internal Conservative investigation over his remarks, which have reignited a debate over religious facial coverings and split his party. "The code of conduct process is strictly confidential", the spokesperson said instead in an emailed statement.

Mr Johnson has rejected calls to apologise for his remarks, in a Daily Telegraph column in which he also argued against a ban on full-face veils.

She was speaking after the former foreign secretary compared the burka to a letter box and women who wear it to bank robbers.

It was in his weekly Telegraph column that Mr Johnson made comments which sparked demands for an apology from a host of figures from all sides of politics, including Theresa May, Tory chairman Brandon Lewis and Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson.

She's one of 100 women who wear a niqab or burka who are calling for Mr Johnson to be kicked out of the Conservative Party. Johnson added: "If a constituent came to my MP's surgery with her face obscured, I should feel fully entitled - like Jack Straw - to ask her to remove it so that I could talk to her properly".

"Despite the rising scale and severity of Islamophobia and anti-Muslim hatred, the response from the Government has been lacklustre, or worse, in denial", Mohammed Mahmoud wrote.

"It's ridiculous these views are being attacked - we mustn't fall into the trap of shutting down the debate on hard issues", the source said.

"The women who wear the niqab and report into us clearly report to us they are called telephone boxes, letter boxes, bin bags, when they are abused and when they are assaulted".

"With everything else going on in London to be diverting resources into an even cursory investigation into an article is freakish", Mr Burns said according to The Telegraph. "Such crass commentary should have no place in our political discourse".