UN human rights chief likens Katie Hopkins ‘cockroaches’ piece to Nazi hate speech

Newspapers urged to curb 'shameful' racism and xenophobia about migrants


An article by Katie Hopkins for the Sun newspaper that called migrants ‘cockroaches’ has been likened to Nazi hate speech by a human rights chief at the United Nations.

Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said the piece published on Friday, April 17, after hundreds of migrants drowned on their way to Europe, was an example of the racism and xenophobia common in the British press.

“The Nazi media described people their masters wanted to eliminate as rats and cockroaches,” he said.

“This type of language is clearly inflammatory and unacceptable, especially in a national newspaper.

“The Sun’s editors took an editorial decision to publish this article, and – if it is found in breach of the law – should be held responsible along with the author.”

Katie Hopkins piece

Katie Hopkins’s piece argued gunboats should be used to prevent migrants sailing to Europe, adding that her sympathy lay with British truck drivers rather than the migrants who died. She wrote:

“Make no mistake, these migrants are like cockroaches. They might look a bit ‘Bob Geldof’s Ethiopia circa 1984’, but they are built to survive a nuclear bomb. They are survivors.”

The article received an avalanche of public criticism amid the ongoing debate over how to respond to migrant deaths at sea.

Mr Hussein was responding to the Society of Black Lawyers’ reporting the Sun to the Met police over alleged incitement to racial hatred.

He said: “While migration and refugee issues are completely valid topics for public debate, it is imperative that migration policy decisions that affect people’s lives and fundamental human rights should be made on the basis of fact – not fiction, exaggeration or blatant xenophobia.

“History has shown us time and again the dangers of demonizing foreigners and minorities, and it is extraordinary and deeply shameful to see these types of tactics being used in a variety of countries, simply because racism and xenophobia are so easy to arouse in order to win votes or sell newspapers.”

Adam Barnett is a staff writer at Left Foot Forward. Follow MediaWatch on Twitter


Read more: No talk of immigration? What planet is the Daily Mail living on?

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40 Responses to “UN human rights chief likens Katie Hopkins ‘cockroaches’ piece to Nazi hate speech”

  1. Gerschwin

    So in the name of free speech a UN human Rights Commissioner wants to stop free speech? Good one. That’s a solution. Don’t argue, don’t disprove it, don’t counter it…just ban it…because maybe that’s all you’ve actually got. Also lefties this chap is a member of the Jordanian Royal Family, you know one of those privileged gentlemen born with silver spoon in mouth whose opinion you normally dismiss but now suddenly it’s the most beautiful opinion in the world – you do realise in his country he’d have the editors of this shower of a website in a cell with electrodes on your proverbials…but of course you realise that, that’s why you refer to him as Mr Hussein when his title is actually Prince Hussein.
    Adam Barnett – half wit.

  2. Cole

    Gee, Adam didn’t call this dude Your Highness. Off with his head.

    I love it when right wingers are suddenly in favour of free speech when someone says things they agree with.

  3. Maximilian Ellis

    There’s a difference between what I consider hate speech and free speech – voicing your opinions is fine, but when they target a particular people or race, then you’ve crossed the line

  4. David Lindsay

    I agree with Rod Liddle that the imprisonment of Katie Hopkins would not save refugees from drowning. But it would be the imprisonment of Katie Hopkins. And that would be its own reward.


    So we should bring the muslim hate-preechers back to the uk and allow them to go back to radicalising our youth?
    F-ing moron!


    She should p***-off to russia and be putin’s beard!
    Or she could join-up with other groups who share her retarded opinions like ISIS!

  7. Gerschwin

    He didn’t say anything I agree with. Try again Cole.

  8. Gerschwin

    Preaching terrorism is illegal fuckwit.

  9. JoeDM

    The UN wanting to shut down our freedom of the press.

    Je suis Charlie !!!

  10. JoeDM

    So free speech is ok if you agree with what’s being said. Typical anti-freedom lefty.

  11. Guest

    Oh yea, making sure there’s violence is typical of your disregard for actual free speech.

  12. Leon Wolfeson

    And yet you’re supporting it here. Economic terrorism is also terrorism, too.

  13. Leon Wolfeson

    No, you’re no lefty, as you support inciting violence again.

  14. Leon Wolfeson

    Of course you try for false equivalence, that your cutting one way, into the bodies of your enemies by creating hate and violence…

  15. damon

    The OP by Adam Barnett doesn’t say whether he agrees with the UN guy or not.
    That person was talking about more than the rather unpleasant word cockroaches.
    He was talking about immigration coverage in the likes of the Daily Mail generally.
    And the views of Migration Watch I preseume.

    He ruins his argument and makes it invalid by exaggerating and basically ”doing a Leon Wolfeson.”
    When the Daily Mail does a Calais story, that is legitimate, not hate speech.
    Because the Calais would-be migrants are not asylum seekers because they are already in France.
    Although I think the word cockroaches is wrong and irresponsible, it would be acceptable to have some harsh words for the Calais migrants who are flouting the laws and causing criminal damage.
    I think it may even be that kind of behaviour that the rather silly Katie Hopkins was referring to when she used that word.

  16. Robert

    Do not confuse him now….

  17. Robert

    She said what she said for a reason, god knows what that reason is. But if she had stated that it is wrong for these people to cross into the EU to expect then for the EU to allow them to stay.

    An opinion which can be debated spoken about is fine what she said of course was totally Katie, she is a moron at best.

  18. jaz

    The thing about Ms. Hopkins, like all other controversialists, is that they are trapped on a ratchet. Everything they say has to be more controversial than the last lest they will be accused of going soft – and what use is a limp controversialist? Of course the best thing to do with people like her is to treat her like a toddler that is showing off, just ignore her. Without the oxygen of publicity Ms. Hopkins will wither and return to whatever she did before. Maybe she will take up gardening?

  19. jargee

    I think that every one of the thousands upon thousands of foreigners that are banged up in our jails and which such printed issues as The Voice tend to decry as a sadness for Caribbeans and Africans, should be immediately released—they are neglecting their duty to enrich British society and its a disgrace!
    No paedostanis need apply for that freedom–we don’t want enriching that effing much!!

  20. Cole

    And you think it’s just fine for a national ‘newspaper’ to print an article using the same language as that used by the Nazis and Rwandan killers?

  21. Leon Wolfeson

    But confusing trolls sent here by Guido is funny.

  22. Guest

    Let’s see…oh yes, the mouse in your mirror.

    It’s awful there’s black lawyers, blah blah, as you claim being Jewish makes arguments invalid. As you make up nonsense about asylum laws, as you say that being alive and not White in France means you’re causing criminal damage and other nonsense, as you defend Hopkins – silly, but your ally.

  23. Guest

    You are absolutely fine with any other group committing the same crimes, right.
    Crime, only a problem when it’s some black people, jargee’s view.

  24. Leon Wolfeson

    Sadly, controversy sells papers.

  25. Selohesra

    And by banging on about her rather than ignoring her the Left are increasing the controvery and helping sell more papers

  26. Leon Wolfeson

    Left? Heh. Still stuck on that one, I see.

  27. JoeDM

    Nutty as a fuitcake.

  28. failquail

    Thank you for explaining just quite why we should accommodate nazi-level hate speech… /massive sarcasm

  29. Guest

    I’m sure you are. And?

  30. damon

    The Calais migrants cause criminal damage to the lories they try to stow away on.
    Its just a fact.

  31. Guest

    So you now support them…so silly.

  32. Arturo Franks

    And may distract from verities.

  33. Mary Ann

    It’s this sort of freedom of the press which allowed Hitler to murder 6 million Jews.

  34. Mary Ann

    It’s OK for right wingers to have free speech, it’s not OK for left wingers. You are allowed to preach hate, as long as it is directed against the rest of the world, but not love and help.

  35. Mary Ann

    Don’t insult gardeners, please.

  36. Mary Ann

    You are not allowed a political opinion unless it’s right wing, it’s called freedom of speech.

  37. Mary Ann

    She said it to attract attention to herself, she wants to be paid to be on television so she preaches hate, it’s a bit like migrants on trains.

  38. Mary Ann

    So you don’t have a problem with Jimmy Savile, Rolf Harris………..


    Are you retarded or do you just not know who you are replying to? Dumb piece of shit!
    All you little neo-nazi bitches get real brave hiding behind a keyboard in your momma’s basement!
    The truth is you’re just a scared little baby, throwing his toys out of the pram!
    You have no clue, and you are constantly switching sides, and trying to argue with people whilst repeating what they have just said!
    You either support free speech or you don’t, you can’t can’t argue with both sides of the coin! Dickshit!

  40. Gerschwin

    Aaah, bless, he’s had a tantrum.

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