UKIP’s David Coburn: I compared an SNP minister to Abu Hamza because ‘I’ve got a sense of humour’

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UKIP’s Scottish leader has said he compared a Muslim government minister to a terrorist because he’s “got a sense of humour”.

The party’s most senior gay politician, Scottish MEP David Coburn, faced calls to resign last month after comparing SNP minister Humza Yousaf to convicted terrorist Abu Hamza.

Appearing on Scotland Tonight, the out politician was asked by Bernard Ponsonby: “In terms of intolerance, what does it say about a man who thinks comparing a  government minister who’s a Muslim with a terrorist is a suitable subject for joking about?”

He responded: “That was not the case. It was an inappropriate joke, which I apologise for.

“It says I’ve got a sense of humour. It says I’m human, and like most of the people out there… they have ordinary reactions like everybody else. I’m a human being. UKIP candidates are human beings.”

Two of the party’s Prospective Parliamentary Candidates, Tim Wilson and Dr Jon Stanley, quit in protest after Coburn neglected to stand down – but Nigel Farage has declined to discipline the candidate for Falkirk.

Mr Coburn previously branded Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson a “fat lesbian” and compared then-SNP leader Alex Salmond to dictator Robert Mugabe.

Despite being gay, the UKIP MEP is a fierce critic of the gay rights movement, claiming that same-sex marriage supporters are “equality Nazis” – and that the Lib Dems and Labour want to ban him from having sex.

Despite his string of outbursts, Nigel Farage said: “People do make mistakes. I don’t think David Coburn should have done that. But am I going to get terribly exercised about it? No.”

Watch the exchange below: