Warning: story and video contain graphic content
A vehemently anti-migrant column penned by Sun columnist Katie Hopkins, which saw her invite the media to show her “bodies floating in water”, has resurfaced amid heartbreaking images of a drowned Syrian toddler washed up on a Turkish beach.
On Wednesday three-year-old Aylan Kurdi was found face-down on a beach in Turkey, after the vessels carrying him, his family and 19 other refugees sank as they attempted to reach the Greek island of Kos.
Images of Aylan’s tiny lifeless body being gently carried from the shore have shocked the world – and brought back to mind Hopkins’ comments, in a piece entitled: ‘Rescue boats? I’d use gunships to stop migrants’.
The mother-of-three likened those fleeing war torn nations – like Aylan and his family who left their hometown of Kobane after it was besieged by Islamic State militants – to “cockroaches” and called for them to be turned away with force.
“No, I don’t care. Show me pictures of coffins, show me bodies floating in the water, play violins and show me skinny people looking sad.
“I still don’t care.”
The column which dates back to April has put Hopkins in the firing line on social media once again.
Anyone who thinks Katie Hopkins is "funny" or "real", she was talking about the little Syrian boy when she said this pic.twitter.com/OvANzEwSQt— Amy (@AmyxJean) September 3, 2015
Did Katie Hopkins smirk at the little boy, who was dead on the beach, I bet she did. https://t.co/8wB5sddvbQ— All Jokes Aside (@spittingvenom1) September 3, 2015
Jordanian Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein said the reality television star had used language in her column similar to that used by newspapers and radio stations in Rwanda before the 1994 genocide that led to hundreds of thousands of people being slaughtered.
Al Hussein urged authorities in the UK to use the law to clamp down on "vicious verbal assault on migrants and asylum seekers in the UK tabloid press", adding: "The Nazi media described people their masters wanted to eliminate as rats and cockroaches. This type of language is clearly inflammatory and unacceptable, especially in a national newspaper.
"The Sun's editors took an editorial decision to publish this article, and - if it is found in breach of the law - should be held responsible along with the author."
She told the Press Association: "There's some things about that column, there are some words which in hindsight you'd probably look to pull out of there.
"But I think overall my message isn't about the idea that we want to see migrants and people suffering, it's an idea that we need to find solutions to problems."