Mur­dered Bri­tish MP’s wid­ower urges unity

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

The wid­ower of mur­dered Bri­tish MP Jo Cox yes­ter­day urged peo­ple to heed the wake-up call of 2016 and come to­gether in 2017 to fight ex­trem­ism and ter­ror­ism. Bren­dan Cox in a tele­vised speech called for peo­ple to re­unite af­ter a di­vi­sive year in Europe, the United States and the Mid­dle East. Since 1993, Chan­nel 4 tele­vi­sion has shown an al­ter­na­tive Christ­mas mes­sage as Queen El­iz­a­beth II’s tra­di­tional speech to the Com­mon­wealth is screened on other Bri­tish chan­nels.

Jo Cox, 41, a mother of two young chil­dren, was shot and stabbed to death on June 16 in the days be­fore Bri­tain’s EU ref­er­en­dum. Last month Nazi­in­spired Thomas Mair, 53, was sen­tenced to life im­pris­on­ment with­out the pos­si­bil­ity of re­lease af­ter be­ing found guilty of mur­der­ing the op­po­si­tion Labour MP. “2016 has been an aw­ful year for our fam­ily. And it’s been a di­vi­sive one for the wider world,” Bren­dan Cox said.

“A year in which fas­cism, xeno­pho­bia, ex­trem­ism and ter­ror­ism made us di­vided and feel threat­ened. From Amer­ica to Europe to the Mid­dle East and be­yond. “And these trends could strengthen, they could gain mo­men­tum, they could con­sol­i­date. “But that isn’t how it has to be.

“In­stead of be­ing a turn­ing point for the worse, 2016 could be a wake-up call that brings us back to­gether.” He urged peo­ple to reach out to those they dis­agreed with and de­fend the val­ues of tol­er­ance and fair play.

“I hope 2017 might be the year in which we re­alise that we have more in com­mon than that which di­vides us.” Pre­vi­ous pre­sen­ters of the Chan­nel 4 mes­sage have in­cluded com­edy char­ac­ter Ali G, French ac­tress Brigitte Bar­dot, chef Jamie Oliver, car­toon char­ac­ter Marge Simp­son, Iran’s for­mer hard­line pres­i­dent Mah­moud Ah­madine­jad and US whistle­blower Ed­ward Snow­den.

Chan­nel 4’s deputy head of news and cur­rent af­fairs Daniel Pear said: “2016 has been one of the most momentous years in re­cent his­tory-punc­tu­ated by po­lit­i­cal tur­moil, con­flict and a stream of dra­matic events. “Bren­dan’s mes­sage ref­er­ences this wider tur­bu­lence but is also a very per­sonal re­flec­tion.” — AFP

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