ANAS Sarwar has called for greater diversity in politics as just five BAME people have been elected in Scotland.

Mr Sarwar, who has been an MP and MSP, said part of challenging racism is to ensure a diverse parliament, reflecting all people within the Scottish population.

To date, just five Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) people have ever been elected in Scotland to either Westminster or Holyrood, with Mr Sarwar and his father Mohammad Sarwar the only BAME MPs.

Along with Mr Sarwar, the MSPs from ethnic minorities have been Hanzala Malik, current Justice minister Humza Yousaf and the late SNP MSP Bashir Ahmad.

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Mr Sarwar said: "In the entire 20 year history of the Scottish Parliament, we have only ever elected four ethnic minority MSPs, and all four have been from Glasgow.

"All four, have been from Pakistani origin. All four have been Muslim all four have been males. We need to attract more elected members - female ethnic minority representation, people from other minority groups for example our Chinese communities, our African community. These are all areas that continue to be underrepresented.

"Four people is not good enough in itself, but we need to have greater representation if we are to truly be a parliament that reflects our wider society."

Mr Sarwar was speaking as the Black Lives Matter movement continues to grow across the UK. At the weekend protesters held peaceful campaigns in Glasgow Green, Holyrood Park in Edinburgh and elsewhere.

In Bristol a statue of slave trader Edward Colston was pulled down by protesters, which has been widely condemned as a criminal act by politicians, while others say the city council should have dealt with the contentious sculpture long ago.

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Mr Sarwar said the idea that racism does not exist, or is not an issue, in Scotland was wrong, explaining: "I've always spoken out against the idea of Scottish exceptionalism...where it seems as if we want to say that Scotland is somehow automatically better because we're Scotland, and bad things don't happen here.

"The reality is there are good and bad people in every country, and Scotland is not immune to racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, anti-Semitism. We have to look at ourselves and aspire to be better, that doesn't mean we think less of Scotland or we're talking Scotland down. It's about being realistic about what the actual real challenges are here in the country.

"We shouldn't be having a debate about whether racism exists or not, instead of having a debate about what we're going to do about it."