George Galloway has come under fire after saying that two women's allegations against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange "do not constitute rape".
Mr Assange, who founded the whistleblowers website, is currently facing extradition to Sweden after being implicated in two separate incidents in the Scandinavian country.
The Dundee-born MP for Bradford West insisted on his video podcast that Mr Assange's alleged behaviour was "sordid" and "disgusting".
However, he added, to define the incidents as rape would "bankrupt the term of all meaning".
Referencing the UK Government's attempts to extradite Mr Assange from the Ecuadorian embassy in London, Mr Galloway said: "This is not about the allegations of sexual misconduct against Julian Assange with two of his consensual girlfriends.
"Do you think it's really about that, or is it about the fact that the United States has had a secret grand jury sitting for over a year preparing a sealed, secret indictment against Julian Assange for WikiLeaks' revealing of America's vital secrets?"
The Respect MP said: "Let me tell you, I think that Julian Assange's personal sexual behaviour is sordid, disgusting. I condemn it."
But, he added: "Even taken at its worst, if the allegations made by these two women were true, 100% true, and even if a camera in the room captured them, they don't constitute rape. At least not rape as anyone with any sense can possibly recognise it."
Mr Galloway pointed to the accusation raised by woman A, who claims that after inviting Mr Assange back to her flat, cooking him dinner and then having consensual sex with him she then woke up to him having sex with her again.
He said: "This is something which can happen, you know. Not everybody needs to be asked prior to each insertion. Some people believe that when you go to bed with somebody, take off your clothes, and have sex with them and then fall asleep, you're already in the sex game with them.
"It might be really bad manners not to have tapped her on the shoulder and said, 'do you mind if I do it again?' It might be really sordid and bad sexual etiquette, but whatever else it is, it is not rape or you bankrupt the term rape of all meaning."
Mr Galloway's comments came under fire on microblogging site Twitter. Former Conservative MP Louise Mensch tweeted: "So ironic that George Galloway's political party is called respect", while others accused him of misogyny.
The MP refused to back down, however, and responded saying: "Oh my, what a lot of "liberal" useful idiots the Empire can count on. It's about WIKILEAKS stupid...!"