Saturday, December 09, 2006

Tony Blair: Conform or get out

UK: I guess he has hit the home stretch of his political run and wants to get certain things off his chest.

TONY Blair toughened his stance on community integration yesterday, telling Muslims they must "conform" to common British values, or leave. In a London speech that surprised many with its uncompromising tone, the Prime Minister continued to shift the government away from its previous belief in a multicultural society. Previously, Mr Blair has insisted that individuals and faith groups should be largely free to observe their own traditions and cultures. But yesterday, he said he was seeking "the right balance between integration and diversity", adding: "The answer lies in precisely defining our common values and making it clear that we expect all our citizens to conform to them." The Tories praised the speech, but the Muslim Council of Britain said the language he used had been "disappointing".

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