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Leaders must ‘moderate language’ to fight extremism – Javid

Sajid Javid

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“I know what it’s like to be told to go back to where I came from,” Sajid Javid will say in an anti-extremism speech later

Public figures must “moderate their language” as part of a greater effort to tackle extremism, the home secretary is to say.

In a speech later, Sajid Javid will say everyone has a “part to play” to stop the spread of poisonous ideologies.

His words follow the publication of a poll suggesting 52% of respondents had witnessed extremism.

Mr Javid is expected to say: “I know what it’s like to be told to go back to where I came from.”

The home secretary’s comments come after US President Donald Trump was accused of racism and xenophobia for telling four Democratic Party congresswomen to “go back” to the countries they “originally came from”.

In his speech, he will say extremists use immigration “as a proxy for race” and exaggerate migrant figures to stoke fear.

“Anyone can challenge the myths,” he will add. “So tell your friends, shout it loud and proud: people from minority backgrounds did not steal our jobs, they’re not terrorists, that there is no global ‘Zionist conspiracy’.”

“We must confront the myths about immigration that extremists use to drive divisions,” Mr Javid will tell civil society groups, charities and academics on Friday in a speech entitled Confronting Extremism Together.

Mr Javid will call for further integration within society, more help for people to learn English, greater support for communities and a celebration of national identity.

The speech follows the publication of a poll by the Commission for Countering Extremism – an independent body set up after the Manchester Arena terror attack.

Of almost 3,000 respondents to the survey, more than half said they had witnessed extremism. Of these, 45% said they had seen it online while 39% said they had seen it in their local area.

Lead commissioner Sara Khan said the findings “underline the breadth and severity of the concerns we have in 2019”.

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Sara Khan told the Today programme extremism exists in different forms

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, she said a “range of drivers” contribute to extremism and extremist ideology.

She said the forms of extremism varied from far-right extremism to less talked about types such as animal rights activism.

“Extremism harms everybody in our country. It requires a whole society response,” she added.

The survey forms part of a review of the threat and response to extremism in England and Wales.

Leaders must ‘moderate language’ to fight extremism – Javid}

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