Saturday, 20 July 2013

Liberal Democrats select former Islamist as candidate for Hampstead & Kilburn

Things seem to be really hotting up in the North London constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn. Its' only a couple of days since reports emerged of an "incident" outside the Labour Party selection meeting involving a member of the Socialist Workers Party, now the area is in the news again as The Times reports:

A former member of the Islamist group Hizb ut Tahir has been selected by the Liberal Democrats to contest one of their target seats.

Maajid Nawaz, who was imprisoned in Egypt for five years over his membership of the organisation which brands itself as the non-violent advocate of political Islamism in Britain, will compete for the Hampstead and Kilburn constituency, North London one of the most hotly contested seats in the country.

Despite now campaigning against Hizb ut Tahir, Mr Nawaz, who runs the anti-extremism Quillam thinktank urged the Government not to outlaw the organisation.

"It's counter-productive and on dodgy grounds to ban them. Frankly, you are going to have to deal with the likes of the BNP and the English Defence League" he said. The best thing is to adopt legal tolerance and civil intolerance. Turn them into a taboo".

The Times claims:

His election would be a huge boost for the Lib Dems, who have failed to make much ground in delivering candidates from ethnic minorities to Westminster.

The Tories, Labour and the Lib Dems all have having a realistic chance of winning Hampstead and Kilburn. At the Last election, Labour's Glenda Jackson won the seat with 17,332 votes, the Tories came second with 17,290, with the Lib Dems in third on 16,491 votes.

Labour has selected Tulip Siddiq, a Camden Councillor whose Aunt is the Prime Minister of Bangladesh.

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