Extremism Definition and Community Engagement

Tom Hunt Excerpts
Thursday 14th March 2024

(2 months, 1 week ago)

Commons Chamber
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Michael Gove Portrait Michael Gove
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A letter was published outlining the reasoning behind that, and the Government are only one of a number of funders of the Inter Faith Network.

Tom Hunt Portrait Tom Hunt (Ipswich) (Con)
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I do not want to be accused of dialling up the rhetoric, but I must say that I and millions of people in this country are utterly fed up with these protests that have been taking place in our nation’s capital. Not every person who attends these protests is an extremist, and not every person who attends these protests is a radical, but many are, and they are going unchallenged. I have Jewish friends who will not go into their own capital because they do not feel safe, and it is weekend after weekend after weekend. When is something going to happen? All the public see is impotence. It is fuelling extremism, and it is linked to this debate. If the situation does not get any better, and we continue to see hate on our streets going unchallenged, is the Government prepared to strip responsibility for policing in London from the Mayor of London, and to give a far stronger steer to the Metropolitan police, who every weekend, from what I can see, are failing to stand up for our values, and for Jewish people, so that they feel safe?

Michael Gove Portrait Michael Gove
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My hon. Friend speaks passionately about this. I know from talking to Jewish friends that some of the statements and actions that accompany these marches cause them to feel a profound sense of fear. That has been well recorded not just by the Government’s Commission for Countering Extremism, but by Members of this House, so I share his concern for the Jewish community.

I should say that the Metropolitan Police Commissioner takes his responsibilities very seriously. There have been a number of arrests alongside these marches, and individuals have been prosecuted for incitement and for hateful actions. In addition, my colleagues in the Home Office have commissioned a report from Baron Walney, John Woodcock as was, looking at how we give the police all the powers that they need. We will come forward in due course with a response to that report.