Labour’s Tulip Siddiq ‘saddened’ by smears linked to Bangladeshi PM

Tulip Siddiq. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Tulip Siddiq. Picture: Nigel Sutton. - Credit: Nigel Sutton

Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn has said she is “saddened” by attempts to smear her in the run-up to next week’s general election.

Cllr Tulip Siddiq's aunt Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh's prime minister, meets Prime Minister David Came

Cllr Tulip Siddiq's aunt Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh's prime minister, meets Prime Minister David Cameron at 10 Downing Street. Picture: PA/John Stillwell - Credit: PA Archive/Press Association Ima

Tulip Siddiq, who is hoping to replace former MP Glenda Jackson on Thursday, has reported allegations of electoral impropriety to the police after copies of a recent Mail On Sunday article linking her to Russian president Vladimir Putin were posted through letterboxes in Belsize Park.

The article, published last month, featured a photo of Ms Siddiq with her aunt, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, alongside Mr Putin during a visit to Moscow in 2013.

Last week, Ms Siddiq’s election agent reported the incident in Belsize Park to the police, insisting the delivery of literature without an imprint identifying the sender during an election was in breach of electoral rules.

Ms Siddiq, a former cabinet member for Camden Council, told the Ham&High: “People need to focus on my track record on Camden Council and the work I did across all communities.

“I don’t think people care about your family, people care about your policies. My position is that I really regret the fact and I am saddened by the fact that this election is becoming a mud-slinging row.”

Ms Siddiq categorically ruled out having any involvement in Bangladeshi politics if elected as Hampstead and Kilburn MP, having previously lobbied on behalf of her aunt’s party, the Awami League.

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“I’m not interested in the politics of another country,” she said. “I understand people are interested in my famous relative but my focus is on getting things done in this constituency. I have to make sure I help people in this constituency.

“There’s absolutely no question of me lobbying for anyone else. The only people I’ll be lobbying for are in this constituency.”

In 2013, the Ham&High originally reported on Ms Siddiq’s photo opportunity with Mr Putin after the picture was sent to every Camden councillor as part of a smear campaign against her during Labour’s selection race for a candidate in Hampstead and Kilburn.