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Naseem Shah (Urdu: نسیم شاہ‎) (born 13 November 1973[2]) is a British Labour Party politician. She was elected at the 2015 general election as Member of Parliament (MP) for Bradford West, winning the seat from George Galloway of the Respect Party.[3][4]

Naz Shah
Official portrait of Naz Shah crop 2.jpg
Shah in June 2017
Shadow Minister of State for Women and Equalities
Assumed office
11 July 2018
LeaderJeremy Corbyn
Shadow Sec.Dawn Butler
ShadowingVictoria Atkins
The Baroness Williams of Trafford
Preceded byDawn Butler
Member of Parliament
for Bradford West
In office
8 May 2015 – 6 November 2019
Preceded byGeorge Galloway
Succeeded byElection in progress
Majority21,902 (48.1%)[1]
Personal details
Naseem Shah

(1973-11-13) 13 November 1973 (age 46)
Bradford, England
Political partyLabour

In July 2018, she was appointed to a junior Shadow Ministerial role as Shadow Minister of State for Women and Equalities, working alongside the Shadow Secretary of State, Dawn Butler.[5]

Early lifeEdit

Born in Bradford,[6] her father left when she was six years old. At age 12, she was sent to Pakistan by her mother, Zoora Shah, to escape her mother's abusive partner, where she had an arranged marriage.[6][7]

When she was 20, her mother was convicted of murder, attempted murder, solicitation to murder and forgery in relation to the man who abused her, and served 7 years in prison.[8][7]

Early careerEdit

Before being elected as an MP, Shah was the chair of mental health charity, Sharing Voices Bradford, and had previously worked as a carer for disabled people, as an NHS Commissioner and a director for a regional association supporting local councils.[9]

She has said that she voted for George Galloway at the Bradford West by-election in 2012.[10][11]

Working with the Southall Black Sisters, Shah campaigned for her mother's release from prison.[12]

Parliamentary careerEdit

In a secret ballot in February 2015 for selection as the Labour Party candidate for Bradford West, Amina Ali won with 142 votes against Shah's 13. However, Ali resigned shortly afterds citing personal reasons[3][13][14][15] and Shah was chosen as the candidate by the Labour Party National Executive.[16][17][18] She won the Bradford West constituency in May 2015 with a majority of 11,420 over George Galloway.[19] When elected, she was one of nine Muslim Labour MPs.[12]

Shah endorsed Yvette Cooper during the Labour leadership contest in 2015.[20]

She was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to John McDonnell, the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, in February 2016.[21]

In April 2016, Shah was reported to have reposted in August 2014, during Operation Protective Edge, a Facebook post with a map from Norman Finkelstein's website showing Israel superimposed on the United States, with the headline "Solution for Israel-Palestine conflict - relocate Israel into United States".[22][23] She had added the comment that this might "save them some pocket money" (i.e. US funding for Israel).[24][25] Finkelstein defended the map as humorous.[26] Shah responded that her views on Israel had moderated, and stepped down as John McDonnell's PPS.[27][28] Jeremy Corbyn condemned her posted comment as "offensive and unacceptable". She was suspended from the Labour Party that month, pending investigation.[29][30] In July, she was reinstated but given a formal warning for bringing the party into disrepute and told to apologise.[31] Shah said she had shown "ignorance": that the post was antisemitic but she was not.[32]

At the general election in June 2017, Shah was re-elected with an increased vote share, and nearly doubled her majority to 21,902 votes over the second-placed Conservative Party candidate.[1][33]

In August 2017, Shah retweeted and liked a tweet which read: "Those abused girls in Rotherham and elsewhere just need to shut their mouths. For the good of diversity".[34] A spokesperson said: "This was a genuine accident eight days ago that was rectified within minutes."[35][36] Shah also pointed to her record on challenging abuse.[34] In April 2018, following Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's death, Shah paid tribute by tweeting an image incorporating Mandela's quote: "Together, hand in hand, with our matches and our necklaces, we shall liberate this country."[37] She later deleted the tweet.[38][37]

In July 2018, Shah was appointed Shadow Minister of State for Women and Equalities.[33]

Personal lifeEdit

During the early 2010s, Shah was injured in a hit-and-run collision, which has left her with ongoing periodic severe nerve pain which requires hospitalisation.[39]


  1. ^ a b "Election 2017: Bradford West". BBC News. 9 June 2017. Retrieved 9 June 2017.
  2. ^ Hunter, Rosemary; McGlynn, Clare; Rackley, Erika (30 September 2010). Feminist Judgments: From Theory to Practice. Bloomsbury Publishing. pp. 279–. ISBN 978-1-84731-727-8.
  3. ^ a b "Bradford West Parliamentary constituency". BBC News. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  4. ^ Brooks, Libby (13 August 2015). "Yvette Cooper profile: 'You don't have to choose between head and heart'". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  5. ^ Becky Milligan. "Naz Shah: My words were anti-Semitic". BBC. Retrieved 24 July 2018. The language I used was anti-Semitic, it was offensive," she said. "What I did was I hurt people and the language that was the clear anti-Semitic language
  6. ^ a b "Murderer's daughter Naz Shah tells why she is standing for Parliament". The Telegraph. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  7. ^ a b Green, Chris (9 March 2015). "Naz Shah: Bradford West's Labour candidate pens emotional open letter explaining why she wants to be an MP". The Independent. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  8. ^ Court of Appeal Criminal Division, Case No. No: 9400393/Y5 (30 April 1998). "Regina v Zoora Ghulam Shah" (PDF).
  9. ^ "Labour's Naz Shah is new Bradford West candidate". BBC News. 2 March 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  10. ^ "Meet our new MPs – Naz Shah". The labour Party. 26 June 2015. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  11. ^ Pidd, Helen; Rhoden-Paul, André (9 April 2015). "George Galloway says his Labour opponent tried to join his party". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  12. ^ a b Naz Shah: How Labour MP suspended over anti-semitic comments forged a political career after difficult childhood, Independent, Maya Oppenheim, 28 April 2016
  13. ^ Moore, Suzanne. "Naz Shah's story is one of survival. Politics needs women like her". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  14. ^ Akhtar, Parveen. "Labour candidate hands back the poisoned chalice of Bradford West". The Conversation. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  15. ^ Pidd, Helen (25 February 2015). "Labour candidate chosen to face George Galloway resigns after three days". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  16. ^ "Public opinion on Labour prospective parliamentary candidate for Bradford West Naz Shah". Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  17. ^ "Naz Shah selected in Bradford West | LabourList". LabourList | Labour's biggest independent grassroots e-network. 2 March 2015. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  18. ^ Kuenssberg, Laura (5 March 2015). "Is Labour making a mess of Bradford West?". BBC News. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  19. ^ Pidd, Helen (8 May 2015). "George Galloway loses Bradford West seat to Labour's Naz Shah". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  20. ^ "150 women back Yvette Cooper to lead the Labour party". Retrieved 26 March 2018.
  21. ^ Lowson, Rob (9 February 2016). "Naz Shah to Become Parliamentary Private Secretary to Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell". Telegraph & Argus. Bradford. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  22. ^ "The man whose map triggered Labour's antisemitism scandal is Jewish. That shouldn't matter". The Independent. 4 May 2016.
  23. ^ Parveen, Nazia (26 April 2016). "Bradford MP Naz Shah quits as McDonnell's PPS after antisemitic posts". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  24. ^ Wright, Oliver (26 April 2016). "Calls for Jeremy Corbyn to expel Labour MP over her backing of 'relocate Israel to North America' plan". The Independent. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  25. ^ Dysch, Marcus (26 April 2016). "Naz Shah steps down as private secretary after Facebook posts about Israel and Jews". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  26. ^ The American Jewish scholar behind Labour’s ‘antisemitism’ scandal breaks his silence, Jamie Stern Weiner and Norman Finkelstein, 3 May 2016, Open Democracy
  27. ^ Parveen, Nazia (26 April 2016). "Bradford MP Naz Shah quits as McDonnell's PPS after antisemitic posts". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 March 2018.
  28. ^ Stewart, Heather (27 April 2016). "Naz Shah suspended by Labour party amid anti-Semitism row". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  29. ^ "MP Naz Shah suspended from Labour". BBC News. 27 April 2016. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
  30. ^ Bloom, Dan (5 July 2016). "Labour reinstates MP Naz Shah after suspending her over 'anti-Semitism' storm". Daily Mirror. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
  31. ^ Scott, Jennifer (26 March 2018). "How the Labour anti-Semitism saga unfolded". BBC News. Retrieved 26 March 2018.
  32. ^ Milligan, Becky (18 July 2016). "Naz Shah: My words were anti-Semitic". BBC News – via
  33. ^ a b "Anti-Semitism row MP Naz Shah gets Labour role". BBC News. 11 July 2018. Retrieved 11 July 2018.
  34. ^ a b Cooper, Sam (25 August 2017). "MP Naz Shah "should resign" after sharing tweet telling sex abuse victims to "keep their mouths shut"". Rotherham Advertiser. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  35. ^ "Labour MP shares message telling Rotherham sex abuse victims to "shut up for sake of diversity"". Yahoo!.
  36. ^ "Petition calls for MP to resign over Twitter row". Telegraph & Argus. 25 August 2017.
  37. ^ a b "Labour MP Naz Shah's 'necklacing' Winnie Mandela tweet denounced". The Times. 4 April 2018. Retrieved 4 April 2018.
  38. ^ "Labour MP Naz Shah deletes unfortunate tribute to Winnie Madikizela-Mandela". Talkradio. 3 April 2018. Retrieved 3 April 2018.
  39. ^ Pidd, Helen (20 June 2018). "Ailing MP wheeled into Commons in pyjamas criticises Tory whips". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 June 2018.

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