Sunday, 19 August, 2018

Boris Johnson and the debate over burkas | Comment

Two Muslim women in burkas walking in Bristol Image Boris Johnson also compared women in burkas to 'letter boxes'
Deanna Wagner | 09 August, 2018, 12:25

A majority of adults in the United Kingdom do not believe Boris Johnson's comments describing women who wear burkas as looking like "letter boxes" and "bank robbers" are racist, a poll has suggested.

"Any clothing a woman is forced to wear which hides both her beauty and her bruises should be banned and have no place in our liberal, progressive country", she said.

But Johnson received support from some quarters, with Conservative MP Nadine Dorries saying he "did not go far enough".

Sayeeda Warsi, a Conservative member of the House of Lords, said Johnson was using Muslim women as a "convenient political football to try and increase his poll ratings". They send out a message that Muslim women are fair game.

"I think that this wasn't an off-the-cuff slip, he wrote a column, he knew exactly what he was doing and I think it crossed from being provocative and starting a debate and actually it became rude and gratuitous", she said. May said she agreed with Lewis. "If you tell me that the burka is oppressive, then I am with you", he wrote.

In his controversial column, Johnson said he opposed a ban on face-covering veils, but added it was "absolutely ridiculous that people should choose to go around looking like letter-boxes".

Israeli minister says Egypt bears equal responsibility for Gaza READ MORE
The Palestinians and the United Nations similarly dispute Israel's assertion that it ended its occupation of Gaza in 2005. A spokesman said any deal risked ending hopes of achieving Palestinian statehood.

Pakistani actor Armeena Khan called out former British foreign secretary Boris Johnson over his derogatory comments against women who wear the burqa.

A former chairman of the Conservative Party has backed growing calls for Boris Johnson to apologise for his "unacceptable" remarks about women in burkas.

He said: "She's clearly wrong to have asked him to have apologised".

A source close to Johnson said, "We must not fall into the trap of shutting down the debate on hard issues".

"It is crass and it must stop, and it must be condemned by the leadership right from the prime minister down".