Controversial British columnist Katie Hopkins has been reported to police for allegedly inciting racial hatred in an article applauding Australia for deterring asylum seekers by “threatening them with violence until they bugger off”.
In her April 17 column for British newspaper The Sun, titled ‘Rescue boats? I’d use gunships to stop migrants’, Hopkins compares migrants to “cockroaches”, calling for a more drastic approach to deter asylum seekers.
Ms Hopkins then praised Australians for being like British people but with “balls of steel, can-do brains, tiny hearts and whacking great gunships”.
Europe should adopt Australia’s turn-back-the-boats policy for migrants attempting to arrive from North Africa, she wrote.
On Monday, Ms Hopkins and The Sun editor David Dinsmore were reported to the Metropolitan Police Commissioner’s Office over the article by the Society of Black Lawyers, The Independent reported.
In the complaint, published by The Independent, Society of Black Lawyers chairman Peter Herbert described Hopkins’ comments as “some of the most offensive, xenophobic and racist comments I have read in a British newspaper for some years”.
Mr Herbert said that Ms Hopkins’ use of the term “cockroaches” echoed the use of the word to describe the Tutsi minority and Hutu moderates during the 1994 Rwanda genocide.
He wrote: “The Society of Black Lawyers (SBL) therefore requests that this matter is investigated as a matter of urgency under the Public Order Act 1986. I am aware that this section requires some intention but given the scale of the tragedy currently unfolding, the likelihood some of these migrants may already be in the UK having fled during previous months or likely to land here in due course these comments can amount to incitement to racial hatred.
“We are in the process of writing formally to the International Criminal Court to petition for an investigation into these comments under the provisions of incitement to commit crimes against humanity.
“Given the huge circulation of these comments in The Sun and in the media generally, the propensity for racial violence against people of African descent in the UK is obvious. We request that these matters be investigated as a matter of urgency and the case file be passed to the (Crown Prosecution Service) for a decision to be made as to the merits of a prosecution.”
A petition calling for The Sun to sack Ms Hopkins over the article has attracted more than 200,000 signatures.
About 1300 migrants are estimated to have died in less than a fortnight in the waters south of Sicily.
Ms Hopkins raised eyebrows again earlier in April after saying that dementia patients were “blocking beds”.