The Conservative candidate for Aberdeen North has been suspended by the party after comments he made seven years ago on an online forum emerged.
Ryan Houghton referenced the views of discredited historian and Holocaust denier David Irving in posts on the martial arts forum when he was 20.
In one post he suggested some of the Nazi’s persecution and murder of six million Jews had been ‘fabricated and exaggerated in some cases’.
The Scottish Conservatives has now withdrawn its support for Mr Houghton, while condemning ‘all forms of Islamophobia, homophobia and anti-Semitism’.
Ryan Houghton, pictured, has been suspended by the Conservative party after making comments saying saying the holocaust was ‘exaggerated’ on an online forum seven years ago
Mr Houghton said The National newspaper had taken a ‘selective look’ at comments he made in discussions about terrorism, LGBT rights and anti-Semitism.
Chats uncovered by the paper found Mr Houghton had used the username Razgriz.
One post said there is ‘no credible evidence to suggest the Holocaust did not happen’, but added: ‘I do find some of the events fabricated, and exegarated [sic] in some cases.’
Mr Houghton also referenced ‘interesting’ research by discredited British historian and Adolf Hitler apologist David Irving.
In other discussions he said he didn’t see how homosexuality was good for the human race and Mr Houghton also claimed Muslims were having big families in a bid to create ‘Eurabia’.
Eurabia is an Islamophobic theory which believes Europe will be dominated by Islam in the coming years due to immigration and higher birth rates.
Discussing the Holocaust he wrote: ‘I find no credible evidence to suggest the Holocaust did not happen. I think that’s a baseline of historical fact, anyone who says otherwise. Stand by.
The Scottish Conservatives said it had withdrawn its support for Mr Houghton, while condemning ‘all forms of Islamophobia, homophobia and anti-Semitism’ (logo pictured)
In the discussions Mr Houghton, using the username Razgriz with a Union Jack flag, said there is ‘no credible evidence to suggest the Holocaust did not happen’, but added: ‘I do find some of the events fabricated, and exegarated [sic] in some cases’
‘But I do find some of the events fabricated, and exegarated (sic) in some cases. As history is written by the victors there is always going to be a bit of ‘re-writing’. But to say that it was all some Jewish Lie, is just obscene.’
When another forum user described Irving as a charlatan, Mr Houghton defended the notorious Holocaust denier.
In 2006, Irving was jailed in Austria – where Holocaust denial is a criminal offence – after describing the gas chambers as a ‘fairytale’.
Mr Houghton said: ‘A charleton (sic) seems a bit heavy, even his opponent’s recognised (sic) his skill as a historian.’
Mr Houghton also added that he is ‘not defending David’s Irving’s views’ and that he does not agree with ‘some of the stuff he says’.
Danielle Bett from the Scottish Council of Jewish Communities condemned Mr Houghton’s comments.
He said: ‘Any suggestion that the Holocaust has been fabricated or exaggerated is unacceptable and rooted in antisemitism.
‘David Irving is an anti-Semite, well-known for denying the historical facts surrounding the Holocaust and no decent person should praise or endorse his views.’
In other comments Mr Houghton, who stopped posting on the forum in 2014, also allegedly claimed the ‘core teaching’ of Islam is the ‘eventual domination’ of the world.
And on the topic of homosexuality, Houghton wrote: ‘Surely if the majority of the population was to become gay then the species would die out, so it would be harmful?
Mr Houghton apologised for ‘any hurt’ caused by the comments and said he looks ‘forward to clearing my name’ after an investigation
He later clarified that he had ‘no problem with anyone’s lifestyle choices’ but was just trying ‘to think of an example when it could be considered bad for the human race’.
Mr Houghton said in a statement on Monday evening: ‘I apologise unreservedly for any hurt now caused by these comments and have been in contact with members of the Jewish Community in Aberdeen.’
He said he had ‘never held anti-Semitic or intolerant views’.
A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives said: ‘The comments contained in these blogs are unacceptable and Mr Houghton has been suspended as a member of the Scottish Conservative party as a result.
‘The party has also withdrawn its support for his candidacy in Aberdeen North.
‘The Scottish Conservatives deplore all forms of Islamophobia, homophobia and anti-Semitism.’
Mr Houghton said following his suspension: ‘As a party we have been quick to call out the comments by others and should act equally swiftly when an allegation of a similar kind is made against one of our own members.’
While saying he was saddened by the newspaper’s ‘reluctance to apply analysis to the context of a discussion’, he said: ‘I will fully cooperate with the investigation by the party and look forward to clearing my name.’
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