Labour MP for Bradford West, Naz Shah, has spearheaded a scathing letter signed by 107 cross-party politicians demanding action over The Sun’s “Muslim problem” article written by the paper’s former political editor.
MPs from Labour, Conservatives, Liberal Democrats and the Green party stated that they were “truly outraged by the hate and bigotry” in the opinion piece written by Trevor Kavanagh, who is also a board member of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (Ipso).
In the comment piece, Kavanagh said that Islam qualifies as the “one unspoken fear” which unites Britain and Europe but claims the problem has been silenced by political correctness.
He wrote: “The common denominator, almost unsayable until last week’s furore over Pakistani sex gangs, is Islam.”
He concludes his column by asking: “What will we do about The Muslim Problem”.
A spokesperson for The Sun said: “We strongly reject the allegation that Trevor Kavanagh is inciting Islamophobia. He is reflecting the links between immigration, religion and crime in the context of a trial of largely Pakistani sex gangs.
“Indeed he quotes Trevor Phillips, former head of the EHRC: ‘What the perpetrators have in common is their proclaimed faith. They are Muslims and many of them would claim to be practising. It is not Islamaphobic to point this out.
“Any suggestion that this article is promoting Islamophobia is a deliberate misreading of a very serious subject. Furthermore, it was never the intention that other elements of the column would be equated to Nazi-like terminology”.
Yesterday, a representative for Ipso told The Independent they had received a total of 150 complaints about Mr Kavanagh’s article.
Here is the letter which was signed by 107 cross-party politicians.