Definition of Islamophobia

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:31 pm on 16th May 2019.

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Photo of Wes Streeting Wes Streeting Labour, Ilford North 3:31 pm, 16th May 2019

This has been a wide-ranging and largely thoughtful debate, but the critical thing that people will now look to us for is action. We will engage seriously with the Secretary of State, as he has engaged seriously with our arguments. Clearly there are points of disagreement that we need to work through, not just as legislators but with communities up and down the country. I say gently, however, that as he goes about that work, he must do so with a degree of self-awareness about the Government’s position and the way that they are perceived among Muslim communities.  I say with some reflection and humility from the Labour Benches, that I genuinely believe that the Government have no more credibility to define Islamophobia than the Labour party had to redefine antisemitism—that is how bad the politics of this place have sunk in the eyes of so many people up and down the country. I believe that we can and must make progress, and today’s debate has helped us start to do that with, as the Secretary of State said, some urgency.

Question put and agreed to.


That this House
has considered the definition of Islamophobia.