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Farage causes storm over 'fifth column'.

Byline: Press Association echo.newsdesk@walesonline.co.uk

NIGEL Farage has come under attack for comments on race and Islam made in a new documentary, in which he cites the case of three Cardiff teenagers who went to fight for IS.

The Ukip leader sparked controversy when he said it was unsurprising to find an "uptick in concern" over a "fifth column" of Muslims in the UK "who hate us and want to kill us", and referencing the South Wales trio.

Brothers Nasser and Aseel Muthana, as well as their friend Reyaad Khan, travelled to Syria last year to join extremist fighters.

Mr Farage said: "I think perhaps one of the reasons the polls show an increasing level of concern is because people do see a fifth column living within our country, who hate us and want to kill us. So don't be surprised if there isn't a slight increase in people's worries and concerns.

"You know, when you've got British, when you've got people, born and bred in Cardiff, with British passports, going out to fight for Isil, don't be surprised if there isn't an uptick in concern. There has been an uptick in concern, but does it make us a prejudiced people? No."

His comments came amid a wider political storm over his call for laws banning racial discrimination in employment to be scrapped, with David Cameron branding the comments "deeply concerning" and Ed Miliband calling them "wrong, divisive and dangerous". But the Ukip leader hit back, saying that the law as it stands does not protect "British workers, white or black".

Mr Farage was forced to defend comments he made in the interview with ex-equalities watchdog chief Trevor Phillips for a Channel 4 documentary, Things We Won't Say About Race That Are True, due to be broadcast next week.

In it, he said concern over preventing racial discrimination in employment "would probably have been valid" 40 years ago and he would get rid of "much of" existing legislation.

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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Article Type:Column
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Mar 13, 2015
Words:335
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