A Labour former minister said she sought extra police support after suffering “far-right abuse” that was “unleashed in part” by “conspiracy theory, racist, Islamophobic, anti-Muslim hate peddled” by Tory MPs.

Dawn Butler took aim at former home secretary Suella Braverman, former prime minister Liz Truss and former Conservative Party deputy chairman Lee Anderson as she raised her case during Home Office questions.


Ms Butler suggested Mrs Braverman and Ms Truss should lose the Conservative whip, which happened to Mr Anderson over the weekend after he claimed “Islamists” had “got control” of London mayor Sadiq Khan and the capital.

Mrs Braverman previously claimed “the Islamists, the extremists and the antisemites are in charge now” while Ms Truss, during the latest leg of her comeback to the political limelight, claimed that her efforts to cut taxes were “sabotaged” by “the deep state”.

Ms Butler (Brent Central) told the Commons: “I have had to seek extra police support this weekend due to the far-right abuse that I have suffered inspired and unleashed in part by the conspiracy theory, the racist, Islamophobic, anti-Muslim hate peddled by members for Ashfield (Mr Anderson), Fareham (Mrs Braverman) and South West Norfolk (Ms Truss).”

She added: “Does the minster agree that there is no place in this House or society for such divisive language? One member has had the whip removed, does the minister agree that other members should have the whip removed or does the minister agree with those points made?”

Home Office minister Chris Philp replied: “I think this House as a whole should be clear that hatred based on religion or based on race has no part at all in a civilised country, whether that’s directed towards members of the Jewish community, who have suffered a surge in antisemitism, or … hatred directed towards the Muslim community.

“This party on this side is prepared to act extremely quickly and did so at the weekend, a great deal faster than the party opposite when they had an issue in Rochdale.”

Security minister Tom Tugendhat later made a statement during Home Office questions in a bid to deter intimidation of MPs.


He said: “Over the past few weeks we’ve seen disgraceful attempts to intimidate this House, to undermine the democratic process and to spread fear among those who have been elected to represent our country.

“This is unacceptable. It must end. To this House I want to say clearly that the Government will defend our democracy. We’re working with the police and with Parliament to ensure that disagreements are resolved in this House through debate, not outside with threats of violence.

“And to those who seek to threaten this House I say this: we will not be cowed, we will not be intimidated and we will not be silenced.

“We will do whatever is necessary to protect those elected to represent us, to safeguard our freedoms and to protect our rights and I know I speak for colleagues across the whole House when I say we will always act in the interests of our constituents and our country.”

But shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper accused ministers of “playing into the hands of extremists” by failing to condemn Mr Anderson’s words.

She said: “Last week Tell Mama reported that anti-Muslim hate incidents have trebled, it follows recent reports that antisemitic incidents have hit a record high. We must challenge all forms of threat, prejudice, racism and hate.

“So when ministers heard the words from the former deputy chairman of the Conservative Party of a Muslim mayor saying that his mates are Islamist extremists and that he has been taken over by Islamists, is any Home Office minister now prepared to stand up and say that not only were those words about the London mayor wrong, but they believe they were Islamophobic and should be condemned as such?”


Mr Tugendhat replied: “Within 24 hours of those words being used, this Prime Minister took immediate action in removing the whip from that individual. If only all leaders of every political party were as quick in removing the whip from those who spread hatred in our community – as Rochdale sadly demonstrates, they don’t.”

Ms Cooper countered: “I am sorry that the minister, who I know takes issues seriously, chose not to respond to the question I asked.

“Rightly, on all sides of the House we have called out and condemned antisemitism and must continue to do so. But if Government ministers cannot openly challenge Islamophobia, they play into the hands of extremists – both far right and Islamist extremists – and he will know that hate crime fuels extremism.”