Shaykh Ibrahim Mogra from the Muslim Council of Britain was the paper reviewer on this morning's BBC Breakfast. Here he is discussing Turkey, the EU and racism:
Sally Nugent: In the Observer, you've picked a story about the referendum, Vote Leave campaign.
Ibrahim Mogra: I mean, the nation has to have this debate. We need to have the referendum and the people will speak for themselves as to which way we should go. But I'm just very, very concerned about the fear-mongering and the headlines that suggest we'll be flooded by Turks coming into this country. Let's put everything into perspective....
Roger Johnson: That's if Turkey joins the EU, and that's a huge 'if' anyway, isn't it?
Ibrahim Mogra: It is a huge 'if' but it's a very exciting 'if' for me, because it's very rich for us as Western nations to have Turkey as part of NATO, to defend our borders, to defend us against any potential attacks or threats and the like, and at the same time we're very reluctant to even consider having them as part of the EU. I think having Turkey within the EU would be a wonderful thing I believe. We already have significant contributions from our Turkish communities within the United Kingdom, hard working people, and dare I say Turkish places are very, very popular with British people to go and have a meal. And how many of us regularly holiday in Turkey? We see Turkey is a very, very safe place...
Roger Johnson: Although the numbers are going down. People are more wary about travelling to Turkey.
Ibrahim Mogra: I think the recent terrorism that has peaked in Turkey has been a major reason why maybe numbers have fallen. But prior to that it's been one of the most favourite destinations. We've holidayed in Turkey several times ourselves. You feel very safe going out at night. No fear of being mugged. So to suggest that Turkish people inherently when they come to Britain will be more prone to criminality, etc, I think it not only borders racism, but I think it is quite racist suggestions. Turks have proved to be hard-working contributors to our country and our society. And, of course, there's always going to be movement from one country to another. So why should it be any different if Turkey does join the EU? I think it would be great.