Anti-fascists from across Britain are heading to Luton, Bedfordshire, on 5 May to help stop the racist English Defence League (EDL) from holding a march in the town.
Luton has long been a target for the far right. The town was mentioned last week by fascist killer Anders Behring Breivik, who is currently on trial for murder in Norway.
Breivik tried to justify his killing spree by claiming Luton was one of “more than 1,000 Islamic no-go zones where police do not dare pass” in Europe. Norwegian journalists visited the town last week to expose his lies.
Nilas Johnsen from the Verdens Gang newspaper commented, “I don’t think Breivik has ever been to Luton. He’s taken his opinions from reading English newspapers online and perhaps from talking to extreme organisations like the EDL.”
The EDL has suffered a series of blows in recent months but is looking to regenerate its forces by marching through Luton.
The group was formed there in 2009 after racist hooligans went on a rampage in the town, attacking Asian shops and families.
EDL leader Tommy Robinson comes from Luton. He recently praised Breivik as “pretty smart”. Channel 4 aired footage of him taunting a Muslim man by pretending to be Breivik.
But anti-fascists are hitting back. They plan to assemble at 11am in Luton’s Wardown Park before marching into the town centre. Coaches are arriving from across Britain.
Unite Against Fascism (UAF) has produced a poster to publicise the Luton counter demonstration. It bears photos of both Breivik and Robinson with the slogan “Different faces—same hatred”.
This week has seen more setbacks for the English Defence League and associated anti-Muslim hate groups.
Racists were humiliated in Brighton last Saturday when they were massively outnumbered by counter-protesters (see above).
Activists in the PCS civil service workers’ union held a counter-protest on Tuesday of last week when the EDL demonstrated at the Home Office in London.
Around 50 PCS members and UAF supporters outnumbered the fascists by two to one.
This was despite Home Office management telling civil service workers that they could not join the anti-fascist demo.
Meanwhile police last week arrested five members of the “North West Infidels”—an openly Nazi splinter group from the EDL—on suspicion of inciting racial hatred.
The five Nazis were questioned by counter terrorism officers.
But the case received a tiny fraction of the coverage given when Muslims are arrested on suspicion of terror offences.
National UAF demo—march against the EDL in Luton on Saturday 5 May. Assemble 11am, Wardown Park, New Bedford Road, Luton LU3 1LP and march to St George’s Square in the centre of town.
For more information, including details of how to book transport from where you are, go to uaf.org.uk/2749