West Midlands MEP James Carver has resigned as UKIP’s Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs spokesman, following the announcement of the party’s integration policy, including a pledge to ban the Muslim tradition of women wearing full face veils.
Mr. Carver said he “strongly disagreed” with the “misguided policy”, which includes the forced medical examination of selected children, and the banning of the burka in public places.
He said: “I would be one of the first to condemn a ban on wearing a crucifix as an infringement of liberty. No-one has the right to dictate what people should wear.
“When facial identification is necessary, such as at passport controls, or in a bank, then it is perfectly reasonable to order the removal of veils, as is the practice, but in a free and liberal society, people have a right to their religious beliefs, and to dress as they see fit.
“It is, therefore, with deep regret, that I have decided to resign as UKIP’s Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs spokesman, as I feel this policy undermines my desire to represent all communities within the West Midlands, including the many British Muslims, who, I know, from first-hand experience, voted to leave the EU in last year’s referendum.
“This week sees the 21st anniversary of my UKIP membership, the party that I have campaigned so hard for, and still believe in. I have consistently spoken of my desire for a truly global perspective for the United Kingdom, outside of the European Union, and I see this policy as being incompatible with that aim.”