Call to ban EDL march through East End after Norway bomber alleged link

08:09 27 July 2011

Anti-fascist alliance in London

Anti-fascist alliance in London's East End

Archant

Anti fascism campaigners claiming the English Defence League had links with Norwegian mass-murderer Anders Breivik have joined demands this week to ban their planned march through London’s East End.

The Searchlight campaign is supporting Tower Hamlets MPs, councillors, mayor and London Assembly figures calling on the Home Secretary to stop the EDL coming to Whitechapel on September 3.

The groundswell culminates in a public meeting on Friday at the London Muslim Centre, which is being addressed by the new Bishop of Stepney in his first public role.

Searchlight claims EDL members exchanged emails with the self-confessed Norwegian killer before he went off to prepare for last week’s bombing and shootings in which 76 people died.

“It’s clear the proposed march in Tower Hamlets cannot be allowed,” said Searchlight editor Nick Lowles.

“The Home Office must now formally classify the EDL as an extremist organisation and let police use the same resources to monitor their activity as with other extremist groups.”

The events in Norway have created an atmosphere in East London that Poplar & Limehouse MP Jim Fitzpatrick says makes a ban urgent.

The MP said: “The march will affect public order. It’s better if the EDL didn’t come to the East End—they should keep out.”

He joined Bethnal Green & Bow MP Rushanara Ali in discussions with Home Office minister James Brockenshire last Friday, before the events in Norway, and since written to Home Secretary Theresa May.

The new Bishop of Stepney, The Rt Rev Adrian Newman, addresses Friday evening’s meeting in Whitechapel in which he pledges to support a ban if there’s groundswell demand.

“I am with the people of the East End,” he told the Advertiser. “If the community says it doesn’t want the EDL to spread their message of hate, I stand with them and nail my colours to the mast.”

Mayor Lutfur Rahman has called for the EDL itself to be prescribed as a banned organisation in the light of events in Norway.

“If the Bishop of Stepney has come out against the EDL, we’ll stand shoulder to shoulder with him,” the mayor said.

“The EDL has a history of advocating violence—enough to list them as a prescribed organisation.”

He wrote to the Mayor of Oslo yesterday (Tues) offering “the sympathies of the people of Tower Hamlets in Norway’s time of crisis.”

Tower Hamlets Labour group leader Joshua Peck and London Assembly’s budget chairman John Biggs have also urged the Home Secretary to stop the EDL march.

Cllr Peck said: “Their presence creates a ripple effect of fear and tension which will encourage people onto the streets. We don’t want running battles or the community being whipped up.”

But the EDL said yesterday (Tues) it was determined to go ahead with the march through Whitechapel.

Its spokesman Tommy Robinson insisted: “We are just using our democratic rights for a peaceful protest and free assembly.

“Those streets are English streets on English soil—we go where we want. Tower Hamlets is part of London, our capital.”

He denied any links with the Norwegian bomber and pointed out that Breivik’s 1,500-page ‘manifesto’ described the EDL as “naive fools” who believed in the democratic process.

Yet Breivik boasted of having 600 EDL members as Facebook friends.

Latest Stories from SNAP.PA

Mirand is ending – but will she be tripping off into the sunset with Gary?

Read more

Mobile phone footage could hold crucial evidence about what happened.

Read more

The video games industry will hand out some of its biggest awards on Friday night in London.

Read more

Promotions

AGA Living Subscription

Every issue of AGA Living magazine is packed full of celebrity AGA owner interviews, interior and design features, ideas to inspire your culinary imagination, mouth-watering recipes and inspirational shopping ideas.

Dojo gives you hand picked recommendations for events, places and activities in London

Tired of always hearing about some amazing event in London after its gone, missing out on the best activities? That’s where Dojo comes in.

Mobile phone footage could hold crucial evidence about what happened.

Scientists have found that cooking with olive oil is better than cooking with many of the seed oils.

Dozens of yellow flowers have been left in her honour at Hanwell clock tower as a mark of respect.

This feel-good clip is well worth a watch.

TOP Stories

28 minutes ago
Zaire enjoying her cake at London Zoo

This sweeth-toothed gorilla celebrated her birthday in style - by filling her face with a special cake made by Great British Bake Off finalist Richard Burr.

44 minutes ago
The fire took hold quickly

This CCTV footage shows the moment a man sets fire to a petrol station in Trafalgar Road, Greenwich.

The ladies pond was 13C this week. Picture: Polly Hancock

Winter swimmers on Hampstead Heath have been warned to “respect the water” after a struggling bather had to be rescued.

London Bloggers

Wednesday, September 17, 2014
The cast, including Josie Lawrence and Mike Myers

Simon Collins catches up with the improv impresarios, who despite being the world’s longest-running comedy show with the same cast, have lost none of the razor-sharp wit:

Monday, September 1, 2014
Do you really need an explanation for that?! (Pic by Serena Marinelli)

If you’ve ever seen an Italian movie, you would probably know how important body language is in the culture.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Don't waste any of your harvest

If you are now inundated with ripe tomatoes, juicy green beans, berries and herbs, don’t leave them to go stringy or mouldy because the freezer can go a long way to making your crops last well into winter.