A Conservative MP has apologised to a Muslim parliamentarian for making a “woof” noise at her in the House of Commons.
Sir Nicholas Soames – the grandson of Winston Churchill – made the dog bark at SNP’s Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh during a statement by the Foreign Secretary on President Donald Trump’s recent immigration policy.
Sir Nicholas said he offered the “friendly canine salute” because he felt she “snapped” at Boris Johnson.
But he apologised after she complained the noises were “extremely disrespectful”.
Ms Ahmed-Sheikh, the SNP Westminster spokeswoman for trade and investment, raised a point of order with House of Commons Speaker John Bercow after the comment.
She said: “I understand that Sir Nicholas, who has always afforded me courtesy and respect, was making sort of ‘woof woof’-sounding noises to what I was saying, which I find of course extremely disrespectful.”
Asked to set the record straight, Sir Nicholas said: “I thought that in her question to the Foreign Secretary she snapped at him a bit at the end, so I offered her a friendly canine salute in return.
“No offence was intended and I apologise to the Honourable Lady if she was offended.”
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