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Thursday, 16 May, 2002, 05:42 GMT 06:42 UK
Britons embrace multi-culturalism
Multi-national members of a community
Multi-cultural communities live happily side-by-side
Nine out of 10 people agree that being British does not mean being white, according to a new survey.

The study, by the Mori Social Research Institute, shows that more than half of Britons (59%) believe the UK has good race relations.

The figure rises to 67% among ethnic minorities.

The survey entitled Voice of Britain is released on Thursday to mark the 25th anniversary of the Commission for Racial Equality.

Its findings come amid fears of a growing far-right leaning across Europe and following concerns that after the terrorist attacks on America on 11 September anti-Muslim feeling would grow.

There is evidence in the survey of widespread respect for diversity in Britain, with four in five (78%) agreeing it is important to respect the rights of minority groups.

'Encouraging'

More than half (57%) say people should do more to learn about the systems and culture of the ethnic groups in this country, although one in four disagree (27%).

There is also a rough consensus among all ethnic groups on the rights and responsibilities of those who migrate to the UK.

More than two thirds (69%) of the GB population, and half (51%) of ethnic minority people, think ethnic minorities need to demonstrate a real commitment before they can be considered British.

Three-quarters of both white (77%) and ethnic minority communities (76%) believe immigrants who do not speak English should be made to learn it.

Kully Kaur-Ballagan, head of Ethnic Minority Research for the MORI Social Research Institute, says: "These are encouraging results.

"Britain is confident about its multi-culturalism."

See also:

13 May 02 | UK Politics
Race row councillor resigns
05 May 02 | UK Politics
Senior Tory sacked over racist joke
14 May 02 | England
Police hunt over racist leaflets
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