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Dorset 'close mosques' councillor receives death threats

image copyrightBCP Council
image captionBeverley Dunlop said she received the three abusive calls on Wednesday night

A councillor accused of making Islamophobic comments on social media said she had received death threats.

Beverley Dunlop, a Conservative member of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council, said she had three phone calls on Wednesday night from an unknown man, threatening to decapitate her.

The council said it was "very alarmed" and Dorset Police said it was trying to trace the person who made the calls.

Earlier this month her posts were ruled not to have breached conduct rules.

In one Facebook post, the Moordown ward councillor suggested banning mosques and, in another, claimed fundamentalists were "hiding in plain sight in the Muslim community".

'Out of context'

Independent investigator Tim Darsley said she had been acting in a personal capacity.

Members of the council's standards committee accepted the report but condemned the "unacceptable" remarks.

The councillor said her comments had been taken out of context.

According to the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS), the council said it was "very alarmed" to hear of the call and that the chief executive had been in contact with the councillor to discuss what support it may be able to provide.

The council's statement added: "[The] government has recognised the increase in threats and attacks on politicians over recent years and agreed, for example, that the personal contact details of councillors need no longer be published."

A spokesman for Dorset Police said it received a report on Thursday morning that a woman had "received malicious communications the previous evening".

It said an investigation had been launched but no arrests had been made.

In 2019, 13 members of the council said they had been targeted by abuse, with almost half having to get police involved.

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