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BNP leader denies he is a Nazi

PUBLISHED: 08:52 23 October 2009 | UPDATED: 14:51 06 July 2010

FORMER Suffolk schoolboy Nick Griffin, the leader of the British National Party, denied he was a Nazi as he made his first appearance on BBC's Question Time last night.

FORMER Suffolk schoolboy Nick Griffin, the leader of the British National Party, denied he was a Nazi as he made his first appearance on BBC's Question Time last night.

"I am not a not Nazi and never have been,' he said.

He defended his assertion that Winston Churchill would have been a BNP member if he was alive today and said the party had changed under his leadership.

"I am the most loathed man in Britain in the eyes of Britain's Nazis,' he said.

"They loathe me because I have brought the British National Party from being, frankly, an anti-Semitic and racist organisation into being the only political party which, in the clashes between Israel and Gaza, stood full square behind Israel's right to deal with Hamas terrorists.'

There was tight security amid protests outside Television Centre in White City, London, where last night's Question Time programme was recorded.

Mr Griffin, who was born in north London and is the son of former Tory Waveney district councillor Edgar Griffin, claimed he had been "relentlessly attacked and demonised' in the days leading up to the programme.

During the recording, he taunted Justice Secretary Jack Straw, saying his own father had served in the RAF during the second world war while Mr Straw's father had been in prison for "refusing to fight Hitler'.

Asked by presenter David Dimbleby if he had ever denied the Holocaust, he replied: "I do not have a conviction for Holocaust denial.'

Mr Griffin lived near Halesworth and was educated at Woodbridge School and won a scholarship to St Felix School in Southwold, becoming one of only two boys in the girls' academy.

He studied history and law at Downing College, Cambridge, and was a boxing blue having competed three times against Oxford.

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