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Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 6th September 2017.

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Photo of Theresa May Theresa May The Prime Minister, Leader of the Conservative Party 12:00 am, 6th September 2017

My hon. Friend has raised a sensitive and important issue. As he said, it is one that I took a particular interest in when I was Home Secretary. Anyone who abuses a child must be stopped, regardless of their race, age or gender. Child sexual exploitation is not exclusive to any single culture, community, race or religion. It happens in all areas of the country and can take many different forms, but I am clear and the Government are clear that political or cultural sensitivities must not get in the way of preventing and uncovering child abuse. The freedom to speak out must apply to those in positions of responsibility, including Ministers and shadow Ministers on both sides of the House. If we turn a blind eye to this abuse, as has happened too much in the past, more crimes will be committed and more children will be suffering in silence.