Stewart was filmed last year telling a Bahraini dissident who was imprisoned and tortured for his human rights activism in the country to ‘go back to Bahrain’
Tory MP Bob Stewart has been charged with a racially aggravated public order offence, the Metropolitan Police has said.
Stewart was filmed last year telling a Bahraini dissident who was imprisoned and tortured for his human rights activism in the country to ‘go back to Bahrain’. The incident took place outside the Foreign Office’s Lancaster House on December 14 last year.
A former British Army officer, Stewart is alleged to have told Sayed Ahmed Alwadaei, 36, who says he is living in exile after being tortured in Bahrain, to “get stuffed” and that he is “taking money off my country”.
Alwadaei, alleged the comments amounted to racial abuse.
Video footage emerged of Stewart telling the campaigner that he is “taking money off my country” after he was challenged over his ties to the gulf state.
Mr Stewart told him: “Get stuffed. Bahrain is a great place, end of, go away, I hate you. You make a lot of fuss – go back to Bahrain.”
Alwadaei asked the MP: “How much did you sell yourself to the Bahraini regime”.
The MP replied: “I didn’t, now you shut up you stupid man … You’re taking money off my country, go away.”
In a statement later on, Alwadaei said: “I don’t believe I would have been told to ‘go back’ to the country that violently tortured me if it weren’t for the colour of my skin.”
Scotland Yard said in a statement yesterday: “Robert Alexander Stewart, 73, a Member of Parliament, of Beckenham, Bromley, was charged by postal requisition on Monday June 5 with:
“Using threatening or abusive words or behaviour or disorderly behaviour and the offence was racially aggravated. (Contrary to section 31 (1) (c) and (5) of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998.)
“Using threatening or abusive words or behaviour likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress. (Contrary to section 5 (1) and (6) of the Public Order Act 1986.)
“Both offences are alleged to have occurred on Wednesday, 14 December 2022 in Belgravia, London, SW1.
“Stewart will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, 5 July.”
Basit Mahmood is editor of Left Foot Forward