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Lord Kilclooney refers to Leo Varadkar as a "typical Indian" following Northern Ireland visit

Lord Kilclooney.
Lord Kilclooney.

Former Ulster Unionist politician Lord John Kilclooney has referred to Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar as a "typical Indian" on social media.

The life peer, who is no longer a member of the UUP,  sparked a racism row after he responded to a BBC Newsline article about the Taoiseach's visit to Northern Ireland.

DUP MP Sir Jeffrey Donaldson had criticised Mr Varadkar's visit, saying he showed "poor manners" by not informing a local representative about his visit to counties Armagh and Down on Monday.

In a tweet about the story, Lord Kilclooney said: "Typical Indian."

Mr Varadkar was born in Ireland. His father is from India and mother from Ireland.

A tweet responding to a BBC Newsline article about Leo Varadkar's visit to Northern Ireland.

Responding to one Twitter user who called his tweet "appalling", Lord Kilclooney wrote: "Sorry you support the entry into the UK by the Irish PM without exercising the established courtesies!"

When another Twitter user replied to the peer saying the Taoiseach is Irish, Lord Kilclooney said: "You fail to understand that racially he is half Indian and legally he is Irish. Some day you will learn to know the difference in these terms. The Indians are a great race and I know as a Member of the British/Indian APPG [All-Party Parliamentary Groups] helping Indians almost daily."

UUP leader Robin Swann MLA, responding to the tweet, said the life peer "doesn't speak for me."

In November last year, Lord Kilclooney, 79, stirred controversy in a tweet by referring to Mr Varadkar as "the Indian", while commenting on a political story involving Irish foreign affairs minister Simon Coveney

He wrote on twitter: "Simon Coveney is stirring things up. Very dangerous non statesman like role! Clearly hoping to undermine the Indian."

Lord Kilclooney later tweeted: "In Twitter one is restricted to a limited number of words and so for shorthand I used the term Indian for the new PM in Dublin.

"This has caused upset and misunderstanding and so I withdraw it. I am no way racist and accept that Varadkar is 100 percent Irish Citizen."

Belfast Telegraph Digital


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