Glasgow & West Scotland

Rangers chief Charles Green criticised for 'racist' remark

Charles Green
Image caption Charles Green's comments were labelled "racist and offensive"

An anti-racism charity has criticised Rangers chief executive Charles Green for using the term "Paki".

Newspaper reports at the weekend quoted Mr Green as saying he sometimes refers to the former Ibrox director, Imran Ahmad, as his "little Paki friend".

Show Racism the Red Card said the comments were "ill-advised" and "racist and offensive".

Mr Green said that he "deplores" racism and sectarianism, while accusing the organisation of a "knee-jerk reaction".

The Rangers chief executive used the term in an interview published by The Scottish Sun newspaper.

The article quotes Mr Green as saying that "he hates the growing political correctness that is creeping into society and revealed he still refers to Rangers business partner Imran Ahmad as 'my P*** friend'".

'Highly-offensive'

That has brought a strongly-worded response from Show Racism the Red Card's chief executive, Ged Grebby.

He said: "The comments of Charles Green are very ill-advised and someone in his public position should really know better than to use this kind of racist and offensive language.

"The use of the term 'Paki' is highly offensive and it is something that we at Show Racism the Red Card are trying to educate young people against.

"For the CEO of Rangers to use the term in any context is not helpful as it sends out the wrong message to young people."

Mr Grebby said the charity had a "long-standing working relationship with Rangers" and the club was "an excellent supporter" of the charity's anti-racism and anti-sectarianism campaigns.

He said a significant part of its education campaigns looked "into terminology and defining what is appropriate".

Responding to the criticism, Mr Green said: "It is unfortunate that Show Racism the Red Card has fallen into the trap of taking something out of context and giving a knee-jerk reaction.

"In the interview, I referred to the fact we are now living in a politically correct world where words and phrases that were once used are no longer acceptable.

"My use of the word 'Paki' was when I was referring to how I sometimes warmly address my colleague and friend Imran Ahmad when we meet, something we both know is light-hearted.

"I deplore racism and sectarianism and this football club does a huge amount of work in this area to help eradicate these problems."

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