Harriet Harman defends herself against “paedophile” claims
British Labour politician and MP for Camberwell and Peckham, Harriet Harman, has denied claims she is a supporter of paedophilia.
The Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) was a pro-paedophile activist group in the 1970s and 80s and was affiliated to the National Council for Civil Liberties (NCCL), which Harman helped run.
Speaking to BBC2’s Newsnight, Harriet Harman defended herself against claims made by the Daily Mail that she was a supporter of PIE.
“It is not the case that my work, when I was at NCCL influenced by PIE, was apologising for paedophilia or colluding with paedophilia. That is an unfair inference and a smear,” the deputy Labour leader said.
In an NCCL statement, Harman wrote that she has been the “subject of a politically-motivated smear campaign by the Daily Mail.”
The Daily Mail responded by saying a document released by the NCCL argued that:
“It was logical but not politically possible that the age of consent be abolished altogether, and said therefore that the age of consent should be lowered to 14 or ten, provided it is demonstrated that consent was clearly given by the child.”
Harman was questioned by Newsnight about whether she was content her employer at the time took membership money from a group that was campaigning for the rights for paedophiles.
Harman dodged that question by responding: “I was content in the fact that nothing I did supported paedophilia in any way shape or form.
This is the Daily Mail trying to aggressively trying to completely re-shape the facts of the situation 30 years ago,” she said.
Harman tweeted today: “when it comes to decency and sexualisation of children, would you take lessons from the Daily Mail?” alongside a picture of an “innocent 12-year-old…posing with sisters in first bikini shoot.”