Terrorist Attacks (Paris) – Charlie Hebdo

Mr Peter Hain (Neath) (Lab): Of course the security services must have the necessary tools for the job. However, does the Home Secretary accept that the priority now is to speak up against, stand up against and, where necessary, confront Islamophobia, anti-Semitism, racism and the fascist groups, such as the British National party and its derivatives, that spread such poison, as well as the vile prejudices of far too many representatives and members of UKIP?

Mrs May: The right hon. Gentleman is absolutely right that everybody in this House needs to send a very clear message that we stand for freedom, including the freedom of the press, and democracy, and that we oppose the vile views that lead to the behaviour and incidents we saw in Paris. We must recognise that we have seen a number of terrorist attacks in this country over the years, the most recent of which was in 2013, when we saw not only Fusilier Lee Rigby’s murder, but the murder of Mohammed Saleem and the attempt to plant a number of bombs at mosques in the west midlands, which were undertaken by a far-right extremist. We must stand against terrorism and extremism in all their forms.

Undercover Policing

Mr Peter Hain (Neath) (Lab): Can the Home Secretary think of a more grotesquely perverted sense of police priorities than where, instead of hunting down and prosecuting those responsible for the vicious racist murder of a talented British youngster, they infiltrate an undercover agent into the campaign to secure justice? Will she assure the House that she will look personally at every undercover operation and check that nothing so dreadful is going on today?

Mrs May: It is of course right that we have changed the arrangements in order to put in place a stronger procedure for the deployment of undercover officers and that the Office of Surveillance Commissioners has been brought in to consider cases where it is suggested that an undercover officer should be in place for more than 12 months. Of course, the House will be concerned about the allegations made over the operation of the SDS and the Lawrence family, but as to the suggestion that the Home Secretary should be responsible for deciding on undercover operations—

Mr Hain: I did not say that.