Council meeting descends into a screaming match after a councillor was told to “go back to New York”

By Jacob Phillips, local democracy reporter

A London council meeting descended into a screaming match after a councillor was told to “go back to New York”.

A motion on sexual assault and harassment was interrupted as Conservative councillor Janet Evans criticised her Labour opponent’s shortcomings on the issue.

Cllr Evans was midway through her speech when her Labour councillor Sina Lari could be heard telling her to “go back to New York”.

Clapping from opposition members can be heard following the Labour man’s comments and in response Cllr Evans shouted: “That is racist. I can shout if I want.”

Cllr Lari has since apologised for losing his cool and explained that the comments came after another councillor allegedly insulted him.

The Labour councillor claims he was told to “go back to Iran” by another councillor – despite having never visited the country.

But these comments cannot be heard on the meeting recording – as a shouting match broke out between Labour and Conservative councillors.

Mayor of Kensington and Chelsea, Cllr Gerard Hargreaves was forced to break up the argument asking members to “please be respectful” before being interrupted by further shouting.

He added: “I think there has been one or two comments made about people going to certain places that are not respectful to this chamber.

“Can we just calm down and move this to a vote?”

Councillor Lari has now reportedly been the subject of a complaint and a subsequent council investigation will take place.



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