Sadiq Khan sworn in as London mayor

May 07, 2016, 9:12 PM EDT
Sadiq Khan, new mayor of London.
(Source: Sadiq Khan/flickr)

The British Labour party's Sadiq Khan has been sworn in as London's new mayor after comfortably beating his nearest rival, Conservative MP Zac Goldsmith.
Speaking at the ceremony at Southwark Cathedral on Saturday, Al Jazeera writes, Khan called the city the "greatest in the world", adding he was "proud" and "deeply humbled" by his win. "I want every single Londoner to get the opportunities that the city gave to me and my family...the opportunities not just to survive, but to thrive," Khan pledged. Khan picked up 44 percent of first preference votes to Goldsmith's 35 percent. The Labour candidate then picked up enough second preference votes to cross the 50 percent threshold, with 57 percent to Goldsmith's 43 overall. The Labour party's leader Jeremy Corbyn congratulated Khan on his victory on Friday evening. Conservative MP Zac Goldsmith's campaign has been marked by accusations of being "dirty" and "negative" , including from within his own party, for its emphasis on Khan's ties to alleged extremists. Critics have accused Goldsmith of attacking Khan on the basis of his Muslim faith and labelled his campaign racist , a claim he denies.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon - who called Mr Khan a "Labour lackey who speaks alongside extremists" during the race - defended the Conservatives' approach, saying it was legitimate to put a candidate under scrutiny, reports the BBC. "Both candidates were asked questions about their backgrounds, their personalities, their judgements, the people they associate with. That's the nature of our democracy and the rough and tumble of politics," he said on BBC Radio 4's Today. Repeatedly challenged over whether he believed Mr Khan was a security risk to London, Mr Fallon said: "London is safe with a Conservative government working with the new mayor of London."