A human rights conference descended into a brawl within minutes of it being opened by a Labour peer, a court heard.Shocking and unprecedented?
Well, when you look at the players, suddenly the game becomes clear:
Baroness Uddin, the first female Muslim peer, had been invited to chair the conference by the International Bangladeshi Foundation in July last year.Oooh, vibrant and diverse!
But the event was abandoned as supporters of the ruling party in Bangladesh, the Awami League, and opposition Bangladesh National Party, clashed.
BNP supporter (Ed: yeah, me too!) Sharef Chowdhury, 44, of Bethnal Green, and Awami League subscriber Montor Ali, 37, of East Ham, admitted affray at Inner London crown court.And the penalty?
Judge Austin Issard-Davies sentenced Chowdhury and Ali to a community order with 100 hours' unpaid work.You’d think so, but sadly, so many of our ancient political institutions have been ‘improved’ lately, it’s no longer even surprising…
The judge told them: "It is central to democracy that debate can take place free of violence.
"It is disgraceful that at a meeting chaired by a member of the House of Lords, a fracas like this should take place."