Sayeeda Warsi, the former Conservative cabinet minister, has accused British newspapers of Islamophobia and hate speech and called for a parliamentary investigation into the issue.

Lady Warsi, the first Muslim woman to hold a cabinet position, said hate speech in the press had become a "plague" with Muslims the "principal target".

She gave examples from the Daily Express, the Daily Mail, the Sun and the Times in her speech.

The former lawyer was giving the fifth annual Leveson lecture at an event hosted by the Hacked Off campaign, which wants greater regulation of the press. She resigned from the government in 2014 over its "morally indefensible" policy on Gaza.

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