Slain UK lawmaker was passionate advocate for Syrian refugees and Muslim immigrants

Published June 17th, 2016 - 12:01 GMT
Flowers and candles are placed next to a picture of murdered Labour MP Jo Cox at a vigil in Parliament Square in London on June 16, 2016 (AFP Photo/Daniel Leal-Olivas)
Flowers and candles are placed next to a picture of murdered Labour MP Jo Cox at a vigil in Parliament Square in London on June 16, 2016 (AFP Photo/Daniel Leal-Olivas)

The young British politician who was murdered Thursday--apparently by a far-right nationalist fanatic--was an advocate for humanitarian assistance for refugees from Syria and elsewhere in the Muslim world.  

Jo Cox, a newly-elected member of the British Parliament, set up a parliamentary group on Syria and held debates in the House of Commons about the plight of families fleeing the ongoing violence in Syria and elsewhere, according to The Independent

In April, the 41-year-old mother of two spoke eloquently in support of a bill to resettle thousands of child refugees in the UKIn spite of her effort, the bill was rejected. 

Additionally, after being elected last year, Cox used her first speech to Parliament to extol the benefits of having Muslims and other immigrants move to Britain. "We are far more united and have far more in common than that which divides us," she said at the time.

Cox was murdered in a shooting and stabbing attack by Thomas Mair, 52, outside of a library in West Yorkshire where she was meeting with constituents. 

The former aid worker had been campaigning for Britain to remain a part of the European Union (EU) ahead of an upcoming referendum on whether the nation would break away from the EU or remain a part of it. 

Mair, who reportedly bought a gun-making manual and Nazi literature from a far-right neo-Nazi group before killing Cox, was heard to shout "Britain First!" during the murder. 

The slogan "Britain First" is associated with a nationalist, anti-immigration movement in the UK that wants the country to break away from the EU. 

Over the past two years, Europe has been flooded with refugees fleeing civil strife and destructive proxy wars in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Far-right groups in France, Germany, the UK and elsewhere have seized on the refugee issue to promote nationalistic policies

--HS


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