A small publishing company has apologised to gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell for alleging he was racist and Islamophobic.
Raw Nerve Books, which is based at the University of York and describes itself as an “independent, not-for-profit feminist press”, published a work titled Out Of Place, which contained a chapter on gender, sexuality and terrorism.
The chapter, authored by Jin Haritaworn, Tamsila Tauqir and Esra Erdem, claimed that Tatchell and gay rights organisation OutRage! were “part of the Islamophobia industry” and were involved in “racial politics”.
It also alleged Tatchell had equated “Muslims as Nazis”, and said he had “collaborated with the extreme right” and “participated with several racist and fascist groups.”
The company has made an “unreserved apology” to Tatchell and OutRage! and has said the allegations were untrue. In a correction, which can be read here, it detailed at length the erroneous passages.
In response, Tatchell told PinkNews.co.uk: “I greatly appreciate Raw Nerve Books swift, full and unreserved apology. They realised there was no evidence to support the allegations.
“The series of untrue claims concerning my human rights work amount to grave malicious libels of the most serious kind. They appear to have been deliberately calculated to defame and discredit.
“I am very shocked that professional, academically-trained authors like Esra Erdem, and Dr Jin Haritaworn at the LSE, have made such baseless allegations. Their falsehoods have resulted in unfounded, highly damaging attacks on my character and on the integrity of my human rights work. It is a violation of academic ethics to author untrue allegations for which there is no evidence and which cause other people harm.”