Socialist Worker

Anti-racism round up: Protest after attack on two Edinburgh shopkeepers

Issue No. 2690

Some of the protesters in Edinburgh

Some of the protesters in Edinburgh


Anti-racists rallied in Edinburgh last Thursday after an assault on two Asian shopkeepers. Around 50 people joined the Stand Up To Racism (SUTR) protest.

A group of 20 people, armed with crowbars and a knife, had physically assaulted Nadeem and Mudassar Akbar last month.

Nadeem, who joined the protest, told Socialist Worker he appreciated the public response.

“I encourage everyone who faces a racist attack to come out in this way and protest against it,” he said.

Incident 

Ahmed, a friend of the Akbars, told Socialist Worker that the assault wasn’t a one-off incident.

“It happens everywhere all the time, but it goes unreported,” he said. “The police are less likely to take it seriously and respond quickly when it is people like us phoning them.”

The protest was joined by trade unionists, campaigners and politicians, including from Labour and the Scottish National Party (SNP).

Edinburgh SNP MP Tommy Sheppard celebrated the area’s anti-racist record, but warned, “We need to do all those things again”.

SUTR national demonstrations in Glasgow and London on 21 March will be an opportunity to turn the tide against the politicians and press giving the racists confidence.

Hector Sierra

Go to standuptoracism.org.uk for details of 21 March demonstrations. Go to Turning The Tide Against Racism Conference on Facebook for details of the SUTR Scotland conference in Glasgow on 22 February.

Racist writing’s on the wall

People protested in south east London on Sunday in response to antisemitic graffiti that appeared in Blackheath and Charlton.

Speakers at the Batley Park protest included Labour politicians and Harold Wilson of organisers Stand Up To Racism (SUTR).

Labour councillor Ann-Marie Cousins said, “We are out in broad daylight standing up in solidarity against racist behaviour. Whereas the people who did this snuck out in the cover of the night.” Meanwhile, around

50 people joined protest in solidarity with migrants in Norwich on Sunday.

SUTR called the protest after a racist poster was put up in the Winchester Tower block telling people to speak English or move out.


Activists rally for refugees

Over 250 activists attended the Refugee Solidarity Summit on Friday and Saturday last week.

It brought together campaigners, activists, grassroots organisations and others at a critical time for refugees and asylum seekers.

It was organised by Solidarity with Refugees UK and other organisations.,

Refugees face new attacks from the Tory government such as the restrictions on unaccompanied children joining family members in Britain.

The summit was opened with a keynote address from Lord Alf Dubs.

Stand Up to Racism led off a workshop on fighting deportations

Support for refugees is one of the important themes of the 21 March anti-racism demonstrations in London and Glasgow.

Barbara Sansome


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