NEWS

Tommy Robinson Shouts At BBC's Nihal Arthanayake After Presenter Ridicules His Criminal Past

'Feel like I have been trying to spray perfume on a fart all day.'

26/07/2016 17:08 | Updated 26 July 2016

Tommy Robinson and BBC presenter Nihal Arthanayake have been locked in a venomous two day social media fight over Islam.

The feud began when Arthanayake, who works for the BBC Asian Network and BBC Radio 5, took offence to the following post from Robinson, the founder of the English Defence League.

Robinson then retorted saying “apologists for Islam” don’t like “facts or statistics”.

Arthanayake then pointed out that criminals aren’t known for their honesty either. Robinson is a convicted fraudster, among other things. 

Robinson then implored his challenger to read his book - Enemy of the State - but Arthanayake wasn’t interested. This displeased Robinson’s supporters who called that a “cop out”.

Robinson was more biting, accusing Arthanayake of “terrible journalism”. 

After a timeline filling flood of tweets, Arthanayake expressed some regrets for getting involved.  

Which unleashed even more. 

But that still didn’t deter Arthanayake, likening his Twitter exchange with the Pegida boss to a failed attempt to subdue a fart. 

One of Robinson’s supporters then returned the thread of conversation back to the topic that had dominated a large portion of commentary around their feud - Arthanayake’s race. 

Arthanayake couldn’t resist poking fun at that... before attempting to sign off for the day.

Robinson then replied asking Arthanayake for his reaction to a piece of writing seemingly intended to highlight what was wrong with Islam. It began: “Muslims are the vilest of animals”.

Arthanayake did not take the bait, even when baited further. 

Arthanayake then re-entered the feud, but only to ask Robinson to ask his followers to leave him alone. 

Well, that was until Tuesday morning when government plans were revealed to review policing in the wake of a spike in hate crime and to invest £2.4 million to boost security around mosques and other places of worship.

Arthanayake was interested in Robinson’s thoughts on the announcement.  

Robinson replied, contrasting the spike in hate crime, to an incident in Normandy, France, on Tuesday where two men armed with knives killed a priest after taking several people hostage in a church. The men pled allegiance to the Islamic State. 

He then made a video about it. 

Arthanayake didn’t reply at first... well, until one of Robinson’s followers called him out for being “superior”.

He then cited Robinson’s alias and criminal history. His real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, though he has also been known as Paul Harris.

Before the thread returned to racism.

While Arthanayake often avoided debate, it was easy to see why he chose the humorous approach.

But in the end, an agreement was reached.... of sorts. The pair shouldn’t engage with each other.

Suggest a correction
Comments

CONVERSATIONS