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UK race watchdog boss laughs off 'anti-England' shirt

Posted By: Staff

London, Mar. 1 (ANI): Britain's race relations watchdog head has dismissed police concerns over "Anyone But England" World Cup T-shirts being sold in Scotland, describing the garments as harmless fun.

The Times quoted Trevor Phillips, the head of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, as saying that the slogan was "good natured banter that was unlikely to cause offence".

His comments come after Grampian Police asked Slanj, an Aberdeen-based kilt-maker, to consider removing a window display of T-shirts because of its "potential to cause disturbance".

The firm, which has other stores in Glasgow and Edinburgh, also received a warning about a range of T-shirts with the slogan "Algeria, USA and Slovenia Supporters Club", referring to England's group opponents.

Phillips said the commission would react swiftly to any serious evidence of racism, but over-reacting to "jokes" risked making it appear like "po-faced thought police". (ANI)

Story first published: Monday, March 1, 2010, 15:07 [IST]
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