Petition to sack Katie Hopkins after she compared migrants to 'cockroaches'

Katie Hopkins

More than 200,000 people have signed a petition calling for Katie Hopkins to be sacked as a columnist at The Sun.

It was set up by 22-year-old Izzy Saunders, who has told Newsbeat that she's angry about the reality star's latest article, which compares migrants to "cockroaches".

In her article she said gunships should be used to stop people crossing the Mediterranean.

It was published before a fishing boat capsized killing at least 700 people.

Izzy Saunders
Katie Hopkins petition

Headlined "Rescue boats? I'd use gunships to stop migrants" the 40-year-old said she didn't care and said the migrants were "built to survive a nuclear bomb".

She wrote: "Show me pictures of coffins, show me bodies floating in water, play violins and show me skinny people looking sad. I still don't care.

"Because in the next minute you'll show me pictures of aggressive young men at Calais, spreading like norovirus on a cruise ship.

"Make no mistake, these migrants are like cockroaches. They might look a bit 'Bob Geldof's Ethiopia circa 1984', but they are built to survive a nuclear bomb. They are survivors.

"Once gunships have driven them back to their shores, boats need to be confiscated and burned on a huge bonfire."

Italian coastguard ship
Image caption Rescued migrants sit on a quay in the Italian port of Augusta in Sicily

The Independent Press Standards Organisation says it's received more than 100 complaints about the article.

Katie Hopkins and The Sun's editor David Dinsmore have also been reported to London's Metropolitan Police by Peter Herbert from the Society of Black Lawyers, who is accusing them of incitement to racial hatred.

Izzy Saunders, who's also set up a charity fundraising page, says the things she wrote were mean and inappropriate.

"It's not a choice they make to get on the boat to make that journey," she told Newsbeat. "It's like a last resort.

"The best option they have is to get on the boat on some occasions. It's not the same as the immigration debate in the UK.

"I think it's sad if those views are the views of the Sun as well."

Shipwrecked migrants
Image caption Rescue workers help a migrant woman after a boat carrying migrants sank off the island of Rhodes in Greece

Katie Hopkins was asked about the article on a LBC radio show she was hosting on Sunday morning.

Katie Hopkins, who's from Devon, was accused of inciting racial hatred in Rochdale and reported to the police in March.

Labour politician Simon Danczuk claimed she used Twitter to link the Pakistani flag with the grooming of girls in the area.

She's also had arguments with several celebrities on Twitter, including a spat with Danny Dyer after his girlfriend proposed to him, and has been criticised for comments about the 2013 Glasgow helicopter crash, Ebola and dementia patients.

Katie Hopkins finished third on The Apprentice in 2007 and has since appeared on I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! and Celebrity Big Brother.

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