An SNP councillor who is a candidate for this year's Holyrood election has been suspended while racism allegations are looked into.

Julie McAnulty, who is sixth is on the party's central region list, has been accused of using racist language in a conversation with another SNP member.

She is alleged to have made the remark while campaigning for the SNP in North Lanarkshire last July.

An SNP spokesman said: "Councillor Julie McAnulty has been placed under administrative suspension while the allegations are looked into.

"We will be making no further comment until these investigations are concluded."

The party's national executive has also ruled there should be no further branch meetings until after Scottish elections.

The spokesman added: "Following last month’s bad-tempered meeting, the national executive has ruled that there should be no further branch meetings until after the election in May."

Ms McAnulty's suspension comes just days after SNP councillor Craig Melville resigned from his post as a member for Maryfield in Dundee over claims he sent Islamophobic texts to a Muslim colleague.

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