Britons split over Boris Johnson’s burka comments

Lamar Ellis
August 9, 2018

His comments come after Johnson has faced multiple calls to apologise after a column in the Daily Telegraph where he likened women who wear burqas to "letter boxes" and bank robbers.

Johnson, a former journalist who resigned as foreign secretary in July to protest againstMay's "softBrexit" policy, wrote that he felt "fully entitled" to expect women to remove face coverings when talking to him at his constituencyoffice.

He added: "The retrogressive Islamic clergy has succeeded in persuading ill-informed Muslims through suspect secondary sources that God wants women to cover their faces, when in reality it is a toxic patriarchy controlling women".

Meanwhile, former attorney general Dominic Grieve said he would quit the party if Mr Johnson became leader, while ex-minister Anna Soubry said that "many" One Nation Tories would also leave. "It's very clear that the language Boris Johnson used to describe people's appearance, has caused offence". If a woman wants to wear a burqa it is her right to do so.

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A string of other Conservatives have queued up to criticise Johnson, with Theresa May saying he used the wrong language and Lord Sheikh calling for the whip to be withdrawn.

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

Junior foreign minister Alistair Burt told the BBC: "I would never have made such a comment, I think there is a degree of offense in that, absolutely right". "If we fail to speak up for liberal".

Sky customers were, oddly, more split on the question of whether Johnson should say sorry for his comments, but a plurality were of the view that no apology was due - 48 percent to 45 percent.

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