Paul Nuttall: Ukip voters must tactically back Tories to stop Jeremy Corbyn

'Islamist extremism is a cancer' says Paul Nuttall, insists passports should be revokedITN

Paul Nuttall has urged Ukip supporters to vote tactically for the Conservatives at the general election in a bid to stop Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn becoming prime minister.

The Ukip chief said it would be "reckless" if Corbyn, who once described Hamas and Hezbollah as "friends", to enter Number 10 in these "dangerous times".

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"[Corbyn is] someone who has opposed every single piece of anti-terrorism legislation put forward," Nuttall told a press conference in central London.

"Someone who has gone out of his way to defend terror groups both in Northern Ireland and the Middle East. Someone who has opposed allowing the police to shoot-to-kill."

"If there is a Ukip candidate, go out and vote Ukip to ensure that these policies are enacted. However, I have no hesitation in saying that out of more than 200 constituencies where Ukip have stood aside in this election, there are only a handful where I would recommend a Labour vote: [Brexit-backing] Kate Hoey, Kelvin Hopkins and Frank Field come to mind."

Nuttall, who refused to suspend his party's election campaign in the wake of the London Bridge terror attack on Saturday evening (3 June), also called for the number of armed police officers in England and Wales to be doubled to around 11,200, based off Home Office figures released in 2016.

The Ukip leader rejected any relaxation in the UK's gun laws, in response to a question to IBTimes UK. As for how the extra armed police officers would be funded, Nuttall promised that "our figures will add up" and said anybody who has been in the Armed Forces in the past 12 years will be automatically offered a job in the police force.

Ukip is fielding just 377 candidates at the general election, down from 624 in 2015. Following the Brexit vote in 2016, the Eurosceptic party has seen its support squeezed by the Conservatives.

The latest opinion poll for ICM, of 2,000 people between 2 and 4 June, put the Tories on 45%, Labour on 34%, the Liberal Democrats on 8% and Ukip on 5%.

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