Prescott pleads for greater racial tolerance

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Indy Politics

John Prescott, the Deputy Prime Minister, has made an impassioned appeal for racial tolerance, asking Britons to show "solidarity" with people of all backgrounds.

In Brighton yesterday, he told delegates: "Don't let that difference in dress, in faith, in speech, or colour of skin be an attraction for abuse. Let it be the cause for solidarity and friendship." He added: "Let each of them know that ... you are shoulder to shoulder with them against racism."

Mr Prescott added: "Show your humanity. Show your solidarity. Reach out to them. It costs you nothing. Do it now."

He called for a "measured response" to the terrorist attacks on the United States and action against world poverty. "We may be meeting in difficult times ... but we are determined," he said. "If we can organise a global consensus against international terrorism, we can organise a global consensus against world poverty."

Turning to domestic politics, he urged delegates not to emulate the Tories' "spiral of defeat", saying Labour could climb "the electoral stairway to a third historic election victory".