Richard North, 17/05/2005  

We are given to understand that Timothy Kirkhope, MEP and leader of the Conservative Group in the EU parliament, is accusing the "famous five" of being "terrorist sympathisers".

This is on the basis that the MEPs - Dan Hannan, Christopher Heaton-Harris, Roger Helmer, Martin Callanan and David Sumberg – have placed their names on Nigel Farage's motion of censure alongside Sinn Fein MEPs. To compound the "crime", there are some Communists on the list as well.

Kirkhope is telling media representatives that the Conservative Group could never support a motion that is also supported by either Sinn Fein or the Communists - although the Group has not been known to withdraw its many votes in the EU parliament where members of either persuasion have voted the same way as the Conservatives.

There is also the minor matter of the Kirkhope having rejected the motion before even he knew the identity of the signatories. But, hey! Principles are principles. Dan "Bin Liner" Hannan must be consigned to outer darkness and, as for Roger Al-Helmer - nothing is too severe for the likes of him.

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