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Victorious Green Party candidate: ‘Allahu Akbar! A win for the people of Gaza’

British Muslims are voting on "very different issues to the wider public," says former Downing Street pollster.

Anti-Israel protesters in London on Oct. 14, 2023. Credit: Koca Vehbi/Shutterstock.
Anti-Israel protesters in London on Oct. 14, 2023. Credit: Koca Vehbi/Shutterstock.

British Green Party candidate Mothin Ali, who won the Gipton and Harehills seat in Leeds with 3,070 votes, proclaimed his election was a “win for the people of Gaza.” After the results were announced, he shouted “Allahu Akbar!” while supporters unfurled a Palestinian flag behind him.

“We will not be silenced. We will raise the voice of Gaza. We will raise the voice of Palestine. Allahu Akbar!” Ali declared in his victory speech.

He was not alone in tying his success to the Palestinian struggle. Numerous other candidates running on a pro-Palestinian platform also defeated their rivals across Britain. In Walsall, Naheed Zohra Gultasibhas celebrated by stating, “This is for Gaza, this is for Palestine” after her win. Akhmed Yakoob of West Midlands secured approximately 20% of votes in his constituency on a pro-Palestinian platform as well.

While celebrating their wins, the victorious candidates made clear their intention to amplify Palestinian voices and advocated for the Palestinian cause from their newly elected positions on local councils.

The oppositional Labour Party lost over 10% of its support in some areas to the pro-Palestinian candidates. Chris Hopkins, the political research director at Savanta, said, “Labour’s vote falling away in some Muslim areas shows that the party still has plenty of work to do among some communities over its response to the conflict in Gaza. That said, it’s likely to have a limited impact at a general election, when constituencies are larger and the vote determines the next government rather than local authority control.”

The election-night scenes highlighted the charged atmosphere in Britain surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. As Israel’s military offensive in Gaza drags on, pro-Palestinian activism and rhetoric have intensified in some British political circles.

However, polling experts say that the Muslim voters who have turned away from Labour this week are likely to have a “limited impact” on results in the general election.

James Johnson, a former Downing Street pollster, said, “The big caveat is that these places tend to be safe Labour seats and the general elections tend to be more about who will be the next prime minister. Those two combined might mean that in seat terms, it doesn’t have a huge effect.” But he added that we are now seeing the “fledgling signs of a reconfiguration in British politics” where Muslims are voting on “very different issues to the wider public.”

The results indicate a segment of the British electorate feeling strongly enough about the Gaza situation to back pro-Palestinian candidates at the ballot box, even as Hamas’s terrorist tactics have sparked international condemnation.

Originally published by Israel Hayom.

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