I’m no racist, insists Lord Kilclooney amid row over Varadkar comment
The former Ulster Unionist leader stirred controversy after referring to the Taoiseach on Twitter as a ‘typical Indian’.
Former Ulster Unionist deputy leader Lord Kilclooney has denied being racist after calling Ireland’s Taoiseach a “typical Indian”.
The peer, who is no longer a member of the UUP, said he is “certainly no racist” after his remark about Leo Varadkar was met with condemnation.
I am certainly no racist and in particular have an admiration for Indians.a member of the British/Indian APPG only yesterday I had a reply from 10 Downing St asking for a relaxation of visas for Indians. My point was that the PM had upset Unionists more than Irish PMs had!— Lord John Kilclooney (@KilclooneyJohn) April 30, 2018
Mr Varadkar was born in Ireland. His father is from India and mother from Ireland.
Lord Kilclooney, 80, stirred controversy in a tweet on Monday as he commented on a news story about DUP criticism of Mr Varadkar regarding his visit to Northern Ireland.
He replied to the tweet, writing: “Typical Indian.”
The tweet was met with condemnation on social media.
Lord Kilclooney later tweeted: “I am certainly no racist and in particular have an admiration for Indians. A member of the British/Indian APPG, only yesterday I had a reply from 10 Downing St asking for a relaxation of visas for Indians. My point was that the PM had upset Unionists more than Irish PMs had!”
Last November, Lord Kilclooney acknowledged a remark he made about Mr Varadkar had caused “upset and misunderstanding” so he was withdrawing it.
He had referred to the Taoiseach as “the Indian”.