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The mayor of London has expressed his disappointment that he is forced to have 24/7 protection due to the "colour of his skin and the god he worships".
Sadiq Khan told Labour activists at the party’s conference in Brighton on Tuesday that he had initially dismissed the suggestion of adopting a security detail when he was elected mayor in 2016.
However, he accepted police protection when he was warned of the risk of those around him – including his family and his staff – if he declined.
The Labour mayor, a practising Muslim and the son of a Pakistani bus driver, indicated his heritage and religion were frequently cited in threats against him.
Revealing that a team of 15 police officers keep him safe "around the clock", he said he had kept his silence previously about his security arrangements because he did not want to put others off from entering politics.
It was the example set by footballers speaking out against racist abuse that inspired him to be forthright about his own situation.
'Islamophobes will not intimidate me'
"I'm not going to allow these racists and these Islamophobes to intimidate me, and I'll never bow to them," he said.
"The mayor of the greatest city in the world needs protection 24 hours a day, seven days a week because of the colour of his skin and the god he worships, that can't be right."
Mr Khan also disclosed that his staff had been offered counselling to deal with the "vitriol" that had been levelled at him.
His intervention came after he faced criticism for driving in a convoy of three cars from his home to Battersea Park, a journey of 4.5 miles, to take his dog for a walk.
The travel arrangement was made on police advice, he said, adding that press coverage about his security arrangements "leads to people then sending threatening emails".
Speaking at a fringe event at the party’s annual five-day meeting, he said: "When I was first elected, very shortly after, I was told that because of risk assessments I should have full police protection and I declined."
Mr Khan added: "The game changer for me was when the police spoke to my chief of staff and my wife to try and persuade me to accept, and the point they made, which was I may reject it, but do I realise that because of me, those who are with me may be at risk?
"Whether it’s my wife and kids or whether it’s my staff who I work with, and that was the reason why I said yes in the end."