MacSHAME ON YOU

A Labour MP has demanded that an Egyptian student apologise for all Jewish deaths during a Cambridge Union debate.

A Labour MP is at the centre of a RACE ROW after appearing at the Cambridge Union.

Dr Denis MacShane, MP for Rotherham, ordered an Egyptian student to "apologise for all Jews killed by Hamas."

MacShane was participating in a debate on the Middle East last Thursday (October 29th) when he came out with the SCANDALOUS SLUR.

The student, Ossama el Batran, a post-grad at Darwin College, made a point of information from the floor requesting the sympathy on behalf of the Palestinian humanitarian plight, which prompted the comments.

Pro-Israeli MacShane was putting to the floor whether a "Jew's life is worth anything", when el Batran spoke.

El Batran said, "What about an Arab's life?" At this point MacShane walked towards el Batran, pointing aggressively at him, saying "your Arab life is worth as much as a Jew's life and until you denounce the killing of Jews…This is the Cambridge Union. You are not a Hamas representative."

Hannah Perry, a student of Downing College, commented that the student was "a person ostensibly of no link to Hamas."

Perry described his behaviour as "unconscionable. He opened with a xenophobic tone which could be excused as light-hearted Franco-bashing with references to Union President Julien Domercq.

"His tone then became more alarming when he replied to a student making a point of information from the floor."

MacShane's shocking remarks were not well received from the floor. "It's fair to say that everyone was relieved when the former Minister of State for Europe, bowing to cries from the floor, took his seat," Perry said.

She added: "I admired said student, who despite this ridiculous, racist attack from an MP, remained calm."

A few minutes later, El Batran demanded that MacShane take back his earlier comments. He said "I request an apology from the second speaker of the opposition for calling me a Hamas representative just because I said a life was a life," to which he received applause from the audience.

Standing up again, MacShane said he wouldn't apologise until el Batran "stand[s] up and apologise[s] to every Jew killed by Hamas in Palestine."

In his speech minutes later, QC Michel Massih said to el Batran, "I tell you, seek a lawyer my friend."

MacShane told The Tab: "One young man kept shouting at me and interrupted my speech to demand that I apologise for the killing of Palestinians.

"I made the point that Hamas should apologise for killing Jews in israel. I did not accuse him – how could I – of anything.

"I had to leave early otherwise I would have been happy to meet the student for a chat afterwards which I remain happy to do on any future Cambridge visit.

He added: "In the heat of the debate the speaker on his feet has to slap down persistent interruptions."

The incident comes just days after the BBC was embroiled in controversy when BNP leader, Nick Griffin, appeared on Question Time.

On that subject, MacShane is alleged to have called for BBC head, Mark Thompson to resign if there was a rise in racist attacks following Griffin's broadcasted appearance.

Thursday's debate was titled, "This House Believes that Israel Demands too Much and Gives too Little in the Peace Process."

MacShane was not the only Labour MP to participate in the debate: Jeremy Corbyn, MP for Islington North, spoke in proposition of the motion.

Other speakers on the proposition were Donald Sassoon a professor at Queen Mary University, Michel Massih member of the Queen's council, Bob Crow, General Secretary of the RMT National Union of workers, and Lord Hannay of Chiswick, a crossbench life peer and Chair of the United Nations Association UK.

Opposing the motion with MacShane was Ran GIdor, Counsellor of Political Affairs at the Embassy of Israel in London, Stephen Crabb, Conservative MP for Preseli Pembrokeshire, and Robin Shepherd, Director of International Affairs of the Henry Jackson Society.

MacShane, 61,  was sworn into the Privy Council, the highest advisors to the Queen, in June 2005 and was Minister for Europe between 2002 and 2005.

Born in Glasgow, MacShane was educated at Merton College, Oxford (MA) and London University (Ph D).

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