Dilapidated Tory leader defends Boris Johnson over burqa feedback

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The aged Conservative party leader Iain Duncan Smith has acknowledged the party’s interior disciplinary system can also restful not be feeble to “shut down” Boris Johnson after his controversial feedback about fully veiled Muslim ladies folk.

The MP voiced unhappiness that Johnson had been referred to the party’s interior disciplinary process on Thursday, and argued that the aged foreign secretary had a exact to free speech, although of us took offence at his remarks.

“You can also not agree with the tone or the jokes, however we fill a part called freedom of speech on this country,” Duncan Smith suggested the BBC Radio four’s On the present time programme. “And I don’t imagine that lawful because someone takes offence which manner that attributable to this truth there has to be an inquiry which manner that the particular particular person can also additionally be shut down when it involves their skill to insist what they imagine.”

Duncan Smith is basically the most up-to-date rightwing Conservative to advance out in defence of Johnson because it emerged that complaints about his feedback had been referred to an investigator.

On Monday, Johnson in contrast ladies folk wearing the burqa to “letterboxes” and “bank robbers”, provoking a storm of criticism. He modified into once requested to apologise by the party chairman, Brandon Lewis, however refused to live so. The party started a disciplinary process having bought dozens of complaints.

The pass provoked a backlash from the party’s exact. Andrew Rosindell, the MP for Romford, acknowledged: “What’s now going on to Boris Johnson is a declare attack on our freedom of speech. I alarm an eruption of infuriate amongst our party’s core voters and grassroots actions if this obsessive political correctness doesn’t end.”

But Muslim organisations acknowledged there had been “a exact affect” from Johnson’s remarks. Lord Sheikh, a Muslim Conservative notice, suggested the Guardian he had bought about 50 hostile emails since he spoke out about Johnson this week and that he modified into once brooding about referring 5 to the police.

The party’s hierarchy tried to downplay the row, arguing that the disciplinary process modified into once confidential. Philip Hammond, the chancellor, acknowledged on Friday lunchtime: “We now fill a process all over the Conservative party for dealing with concerns, complaints that arise about members of our party. That process is now engaged, it’s below manner and I’m not going to insist the leisure more about that venture.”

Duncan Smith acknowledged: “A full bunch of us of more than just a few religions fill had abusive issues acknowledged in jokes by comedians. But we don’t straight away shut these of us down if we take offence.”

Johnson obtained toughen from an unlikely provide when comedian Rowan Atkinson waded into the furore.

The Blackadder and Mr Bean superstar, who has beforehand made free speech interventions, acknowledged the aged cupboard minister had made a “somewhat factual” joke when he counseled ladies folk wearing face-veils gave the look of letterboxes, and insisted it modified into once pointless to apologise for joking about religion as it continuously causes offence.

“You can also restful in actuality simplest apologise for a inappropriate joke. On that basis, no apology is required,” he wrote in a letter to the Instances.