Socialist Worker

United call for action to halt growth of BNP

Issue No. 1853

THE THREAT posed by 16 British National Party(BNP) councillors in Britain has united anti-Nazi campaigners in a call for demonstrations on Saturday 28 June. Protests are planned in Burnley, Broxbourne, Halifax and Tipton - places where the BNP have conned people into voting for them.

The continuing danger from the BNP was shown in a by-election in Walsall last week where the BNP stood for the first time and came second with 746 votes - 26 percent of the vote. The high profile figures urging people to join the demonstrations against the BNP include union leaders John Edmonds of the GMB, Tony Dubbins (GPMU) and Mark Serwotka (PCS).

Other signatories include Manchester United Football club, the band Heartless Crew, Labour executive member Shahid Malik and Labour MPs John Cryer, Harry Cohen and Jeremy Corbyn. They have added their names to a statement designed to gather people from different political backgrounds who are opposed to the Nazis.

It reads, 'We are urging you to join us in Burnley, Tipton, Broxbourne and Halifax to rally against the Nazis. The British National Party, whose members sieg heiled as they won seats, are now the second largest party on Burnley Council, with eight seats. The day after the election, an Indian takeaway was firebombed. Today's fascists hope to build on their high votes to gain MEPs in next year's elections. They want to follow in the footsteps of Le Pen, Haider and Fini. We must stop them now before it's too late. The aim of the BNP is 'an all-white society' states its leader Nick Griffin. He also says that 'Anyone of European origin is white and similar to Britons... Europeans are fine, but the line stops there.' The BNP have exploited people's distrust and disillusionment with official politics, using the media hysteria over asylum seekers to build on racism. The past year has afforded the BNP an unacceptable degree of respectability and normalisation. The local media swoons over their every stunt and there is little or no opposition from local councils where Nazis have been elected. It's time to take a stand against the Nazis. Join us to defend our multiracial, multi-faith and multicultural society. We are the majority - black and white united against race hatred and division.'

The unity demonstrations on 28 June are an important chance for anti-Nazis to show their determination not to let the BNP grow.

To sign the statement and find out details of the demonstrations contact Unity, c/o the Anti Nazi League, PO Box 2566, London N4 1WJ. Phone 020 7924 0333

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Sat 31 May 2003, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1853
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