The BBC’s Huw Edwards has been dragged into the growing NUJ row over calling Charlie Hebdo racist. The London Welsh Centre, of which he is president, has agreed to host a controversial debate tonight organised by a bunch of extreme-leftist Socialist Workers Party hippies, who claim that French satirical magazine is evil.
The organisers of the public meeting from the London Magazine Branch of the National Union of Journalists have already been told that they cannot hold the meeting in the union’s own offices due to ‘security worries’. The topic of discussion, written by the branch chair Alan Gibson, states: “Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons lampooning Islam, and particularly the depictions of the Prophet Mohammed, have been racist”.
Gibson, a long-time SWP loon, has already faced the wrath of his members who do not wish the meeting to go ahead – with many poised to resign from the union. In an email announcing the new venue, unrepentant Gibson criticised his union again for not organising such a meeting itself and said: “I make no apologies for my motivation.”
Regular readers will remember that the SWP has faced criticism in the past for courting the Muslim Brotherhood. The Stop The War Coalition, for example, which is dominated by the SWP, has held sexually segregated meetings in an attempt to bolster its alliance with the Muslim-Brotherhood-affiliated Muslim Association of Britain. Wrong-uns.
At a time when the journalistic world seem united in defence of free speech, Edwards is unlikely to be grateful to be dragged into to this row – not least as he is understood to be an NUJ member himself. Over to you, Huw.