BBC News, the Guardian, the Independent and the Telegraph have all reported on the leader of the Respect Party, Salma Yaqoob’s decision to resign as leader and quit the party. Her resignation comes after the Respect Party’s only MP, George Galloway, who won a seat in a by-election for Bradford West earlier this year made comments about a case of alleged sexual assault involving the Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange.
From the BBC:
“Respect Party leader Salma Yaqoob has resigned and quit the party, blaming a "breakdown in trust" at senior levels.
“She was highly critical of recent comments by Respect MP George Galloway about rape and the case against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.
“She did not refer to that, but said the last few weeks had been "extremely difficult" for the party and for her.
“Ms Yaqoob said her decision had been taken with "deep regret" but "collaborative working" had ceased."
Last month, Galloway, criticised the case against Julian Assange who is wanted in Sweden on allegations of sexual assault. He had suggested that the allegations against Assange amounted to little more than “bad sexual etiquette”.
However as the BBC states, “He later "clarified" the remarks, insisting that he had always believed non-consensual sex was rape.
“At the time, Ms Yaqoob described the original comments as "wrong and deeply disappointing".
“In a statement on the party's website on Tuesday, she said: "The last few weeks have been extremely difficult for everyone in the party. I feel necessary relations of trust and collaborative working have unfortunately broken down.
"I have no wish to prolong those difficulties, and indeed hope that they may now be drawn to a close."
Galloway has reportedly declined to comment on Yaqoob’s departure. The party’s national secretary, Chris Chilvers responded to the news of her resignation, saying: "We would like to thank her for the great contribution she has made to Respect over the last decade. We look forward to working with Salma in the future in pursuit of our shared values and objectives."
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