Fascism-row Tory Euro-MP in plea to Cameron

THE Tory MEP disciplined after criticising David Cameron's new European ally has called for party leaders to restore the whip.

Writing exclusively for the Yorkshire Post, Edward McMillan-Scott steps up his fierce criticism of Michal Kaminski, who chairs the new grouping set up by the Tories, accusing him of representing "respectable fascism" and a "menacing political movement".

Just a day after Jewish leaders across Europe expressed concern at allegations of anti-semitism levelled at Mr Kaminski, Yorkshire and Humber MEP Mr McMillan-Scott claims Mr Cameron has been "used" by extreme groups seeking legitimacy – and contrasts his treatment for speaking out with the lack of discipline meted out to MPs caught up in the expenses scandal.

"When I was elected leader of the Conservative MEPs in 1997, The Times described me as 'a moderate pro-European, with a general loyalty to the party line'," he writes. "I am to this day, and I have asked for the Conservative whip to be restored. Is it not telling that, after a three-month onslaught on MPs' expenses, the whip was removed from no Conservative MP except Derek Conway?"

He adds: "The rise of 'respectable fascism' must be stopped. The people who advised Cameron have been used by those who seek respectability through links with the Conservative Party. It is not me who should be expelled – it is Kaminski."

Mr Cameron withdrew Tory MEPs from the centre-right European People's Party (EPP) grouping in Brussels after last month's Euro-elections to set up a new anti-federalist European Conservative and Reformist (ECR) group, which includes Mr Kaminski's Polish Law and Justice Party.

But the Tory leader has been under pressure to sever the links amid controversy over Mr Kaminski's 1980s membership of the National Rebirth of Poland party (NOP), which has been described by the US State Department as "harbouring anti-semitic views".

Mr Kaminski rejects all claims of anti-semitism – including claims he tried to block an apology over one of the worst anti-Jewish atrocities in wartime Europe – but the party is also accused of being homophobic.

Mr McMillan-Scott had the whip withdrawn after challenging - successfully - Mr Kaminski for one of the European Parliament vice president posts, in spite of Mr Cameron's pleas to stand aside.