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Our intention is to inform people of racist, homophobic, religious extreme hate speech perpetrators across social networking internet sites. And we also aim to be a focal point for people to access information and resources to report such perpetrators to appropriate web sites, governmental departments and law enforcement agencies around the world.

We will also post relevant news worthy items and information on Human rights issues, racism, extremist individuals and groups and far right political parties from around the world although predominantly Britain.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Swiss far-right party mascot goat found painted black

The far-right party Swiss People's Party (SVP) has said its mascot goat which was reported missing over the weekend has been found safe and well.

The animal, named Zottel, and fellow dwarf goat Mimo were found in the Zurich-Witikon area, said the party.

They had been tied to a tree and smeared with black paint by "extremist delinquents", they said.

Members of a group called Anti-Fascist Action claimed responsibility for the kidnapping.

Provocative campaignThe animals have now been returned to their owner, SVP parliamentarian Ernst Schibli.

"At the moment he (Zottel) and his friend Mimo are a bit in shock, but mostly exhausted and probably happy that they're home," Mr Schibli told Reuters news agency.

The 10-year-old Zottel has been the SVP's mascot since the 2007 elections, when the party ran a poster campaign across Switzerland depicting three white sheep kicking a black sheep off the Swiss flag.

The party then secured nearly 30% of the vote after the provocative campaign.

According to the SVP's website, "Zottel saves Switzerland" and is "against mass immigration".

For next week's legislative elections, the SVP has centred its campaign around the issue of immigration which it believes is out of control.

BBC News

Swiss party heading for victory wants to ban immigration

A far-right party heading for a record margin of victory in general elections on Sunday has announced plans to turn Switzerland into an immigrant-free bastion.

Polls show that the Swiss People's Party (SVP) is likely to seal its place as Europe's most successful populist political force after a campaign targeting immigrants, whom its posters depict as black boots trampling on the Swiss flag.

As the election campaign drew to a close, the SVP announced that it had gathered the requisite 100,000 signatures to call a referendum, under Swiss direct democracy laws, on withdrawing from freedom of travel arrangements with the European Union.

This would mean a return to quotas of migrants from the EU, including Britain, limiting access to the Alpine state and reversing a decade of openness.

European companies would have to go through bureaucratic application procedures for their non-Swiss employees and EU visitors would lose the automatic right to stay there.

Analysts have dismissed the move as an election stunt, not least because a referendum would take up to two years to organise, but it fits a pattern of anti-immigrant campaigns backed by the SVP. These include the recent vote in the lower chamber of parliament to ban the Muslim veil, as well as a referendum last year in which Swiss voters backed a ban on the building of minarets.

“This seems like a last try to get some attention before the election,” said Georg Lutz, the director of Swiss Electoral Studies at the Swiss Foundation for Research in Social Sciences in Lausanne. “I do not think it will make too much difference to the election outcome because the Swiss People's Party is so far ahead. But it would be a disaster for Switzerland because if they managed to get it through it could mean the end of other bilateral agreements with the EU.

“It is popular, however - there has been a lot of immigration and in certain areas it puts quite serious pressure on the housing market.”

Researchers at the University of Freiburg in Germany, commissioned by the Swiss Liberal Party, have warned that breaching the freedom of movement agreement would lead to the EU cancelling other bilateral arrangements.

Switzerland is not in the EU but it has agreed to allow freedom of cross-border transit and employment for fellow Europeans, and its citizens to travel and work freely across the continent.

Silvia Bar, the SVP deputy-general secretary, said that she simply wanted Switzerland to return to its pre-2002 position of running its borders and immigration.

“We have the problem that there are too many coming from Europe and especially from Germany. They always say they are qualified people but we are not talking about professors of chemistry, it is just anyone who has a degree at university now,” she said.

She denied that the SVP played on fears of foreigners or racism. “If you do not speak about things that people see on a daily basis, you will see racism come. That is why we are talking frankly and clearly about problems we have.”

There is resistance to the party however. Its mascot, a goat, was kidnapped and painted black in protest at the party's policies.

After its breakthrough election in 1999, the SVP has gone from strength to strength and been the most consistently popular far-right party in Europe.

It stands at 29.3 per cent support in the latest opinion poll, well ahead of the Socialist Party in second place on 19.9 per cent, and higher than its record 28.9 per cent share of the vote in the 2007 election.

The next most consistently successful far-right party is the Freedom Party of Austria, which joined a coalition government in 2000-05, and has polled at 29 per cent support this summer with the next elections due in 2013.

Populist anti-immigrant parties have enjoyed rising success in the Netherlands, Hungary and Finland, where the True Finns increased their vote in this year's election to 19.1 per cent from 4.1 per cent in 2007. In Denmark support for the anti-immigrant Danish People's Party, which was in government for 10 years from 2001, slipped slightly in last month's election from 13.8 to 12.3 per cent.

Under the Swiss system of consensus government by a seven-member Cabinet, made up of members from at least three parties, the SVP has made it clear that a convincing victory will lead it to demand an extra seat.

The Australian.com

Police quiz tattoist after Klan allegations (UK)

Chris Hopgood
A North-East tattooist has been questioned by police after a national newspaper claimed he was the leader of the British wing of a notorious white supremacist group.

Chris Hopgood was visited by officers from Durham Police yesterday.

Detectives wanted to quiz him over allegations in a newspaper that he was a member of the Ku Klux Klan.

They left after a short time and last night a spokesman for Durham Police said no crime had been committed and no further action would be taken.

Mr Hopgood, who could not be contacted last night, has denied any links to the notorious Far Right group, which is still classed as a terrorist organisation in the US.

This item continues at The Northern Echo

Neo-Nazi group tricks German state into selling manor house

Officials in the former East Germany have been stung by revelations that they were hoodwinked into selling a listed 19th-century manor house to a neo-Nazi group which used a front woman posing as a practitioner of alternative medicine to complete the deal.

The disclosures in yesterday's Der Spiegel are a major embarrassment for the once Communist state of Thuringia, which spends €2.6m (£2.3m) a year combating extremism in a region renowned for neo-Nazi politics and far-right violence. The neo-Nazi group plans to use the mansion as a centre for far-right extremists and Holocaust deniers.

Martina Renner, a spokeswoman for Thuringia's opposition Left Party, said the sale of the property was scandalous. "The state government will have to explain how such a well-known building could be sold off to right-wing extremists without anyone realising what was going on," she added.

The manor in the small village of Guthmannshausen, 30 miles north east of Weimar, is a neo-classical property containing a pillared banqueting hall, a sauna and numerous outbuildings. Previously owned by the state government, it was sold in May to a dubious neo-Nazi organisation called Gedächtnisstätte [Places of Remembrance], based in the western state of Lower Saxony. None of the officials involved realised that the buyer was a far-right group.

Yesterday, it emerged that Wolfram Schiedewitz, who is the president of Places of Remembrance, is a well-known extremist with a track record of propagating pro-Nazi views and Holocaust denial which goes back two decades.

"We have finally found a new home," Mr Schiedewitz declared in a message to his supporters. "We want to fill it with memory of our Second World War civilians who were the victims of bombardment, expulsions and prison camps."

But experts said they were certain the group intended to set up a rallying point for the far right. The group's clandestine purchase fits a well-defined strategy which has enabled neo-Nazis to gradually increase their presence in the former Communist East since Germany's reunification in 1990.

"The acquisition has enabled the far right to strengthen its infrastructure," said Fabian Virchow, a political analyst. State security officials in Thuringia say the purchase of the house was most probably masterminded by a shadowy female neo-Nazi named only as "B". She posed as an alternative medicine practitioner and duped officials into believing she wanted to hold seminars in the building and rent it to other users.

However, the security officials, who insisted they were not consulted during the sale, said yesterday that "B" was not only a member of Places of Remembrance but also had close links to a Nazi group called the Society for Free Communication, the country's "largest far-right cultural organisation".

Thuringia's finance ministry has said it will investigate with a view to cancelling the sale but legal experts said this could take the state years. "The new owners of the manor will bring together neo-Nazis and old Nazis," said the Left Party's Mrs Renner. "The Holocaust deniers will play a particularly important role."

The Independent

Soldier suspended over swastika flag (Austria)

An Austrian soldier faces a trial for buying flags showing banned Nazi era signs and slogans while participating in an international peacekeeping mission.

A spokesman for the defence ministry said today (Tues) a colleague of the militiaman informed superiors when he showed the items to him while on patrol at the Golan Heights in Syria. Army officials said the incident was an isolated case, adding that the soldier was suspended. They explained Austrian prosecutors were already looking into the case. The member of an Austrian militia unit could face a fine or a prison term for publicly backing Nazi ideology. One of the flags he owned reportedly showed a swastika while the other one featured prohibited slogans.

Only last month, a 54-year-old man was sentenced to six months in jail by a court in Wiener Neustadt, Lower Austria, for glorifying the Third Reich. The man – a co-founder and former head of the banned Austrian Nationalist Party (NVP) – was found guilty of breaching Austrian anti-Nazi propaganda bylaws by celebrating late World War Two (WWII) era dictator Adolf Hitler’s birthday between 2007 and 2009. Prosecutors informed the court that he also gave the Nazi salute and praised banned symbols like the swastika as well as Hitler himself. Investigators said data found on the defendant’s computer confirmed his neo-Nazi attitude.

Austrian Independant

We expose vile racist biker as British leader of the Ku Klux Klan (UK)

He tried to hide his identity behind the hideous hood of the Ku Klux Klan – but his tell-tale tattoos are visible for all to see.

This is Chris Hopgood, vile racist leader of a British wing of the white supremacists. In the first evidence of UK Klan activity in decades, the KKK Grand Dragon poses with other senior members of the sick organisation.

A Mirror investigation uncovered the snaps on a German extremist website, set up to lure new recruits to the infamous US-based hate group.

Hopgood, a tattooist living in Co Durham, proudly wears a Klan robe as he stands alongside another KKK Grand Dragon and the European White Knights of the Burning Cross Imperial Wizard. The same group staged a cross-burning ceremony in a field in Germany this year and posted a video of the disturbing

Hopgood, 51, is also a supporter of Nick Griffin’s far-right British National Party and the English Defence League.
He believed he could hide under a Klan hood during secret meetings. But as our photos show, he fails to cover the word KLAN tattooed across the knuckles of his right hand. Also on view are his distinctive spider-web tattoos creeping over both his hands.

In photos we took of the bearded, heavy-set biker out walking in the old mining town of Easington Colliery, the same tattoos are clearly showing – proving he is the hooded Klan leader. The married dad, who has multiple piercings, including a bull-ring through his nose, also sports a Nazi symbol sewn into his leather biker’s vest.

The European White Knights bring together white supremacists in Europe and the US who believe in a racist and anti-Jewish creed called Christian Identity.

The European White Knights
The group claims it is officially recognised by the original KKK in the US and is partnered with several other US groups – including the gay and black-hating Keltin Klan Kirk, whose masked leader is on YouTube preaching hatred in front of a swastika with an assault rifle.

The European White Knights claim to be ­represented in Britain, Germany, France, Greece, Austria, Switzerland and Sweden.

Butch-looking Hopgood ran a separate whiteknights-kkk.co.uk website, which was recently taken down, on which he denounced homosexuality as a “cancer that threatens our way of life”, and warned: “We are a threat for we will never lay down to the oppressors and enemies of our white race.”

He has several tattoos across his body, including his nickname “Hoppy” on the side of his shaved head, and his tag on social networking site Fubar is Hoppy Texas Wolves.

Hopgood has posted dozens of photos of himself on his bikes and posing with the Confederate flag – associated with Southern US heritage but also used by some as a symbol of slavery and racism.

Hopgood – who has spent time in Georgia, a US state with a huge KKK presence – shared a picture with friends on Fubar of a pregnant white woman and blonde child with the words “Love Your Race”.Underneath, he has written: “For our kids and grandkids”. Under Interests, he writes: “www.whiteknights-kkk.co.uk go visit worth a look.”

The Mirror has discovered the whiteknights-kkk.co.uk website was set up using Hopgood’s address in Easington Colliery.

New recruits were invited to join by filling out an application form – and confirming: “I believe in the segregation of the races.”

His Facebook profile picture is the symbol for the EDL Bikers, a section of the right-wing English Defence League.

And Hopgood, born in Aldershot, Hants, also trumpeted his support for Nick Griffin and the BNP on his personal site: “The BNP is a legally elected political party elected by the people of England and as such he has the rights of any other legal party to have his say on our behalf.”

Our investigator made contact with a Chris affiliated to the White Knights site, who claimed to be the KKK Grand Dragon of England.

In emails, he boasted he was recruiting new members and hoped to open KKK branches in Scotland and Wales.

On an online forum used by extremists, a Grand Dragon called Chris wrote: “Greetings brothers and sisters and blessings to you all. I am Chris Grand Dragon ‘European White Knights Of The Burning Cross’ England. It is such an honour to be welcomed so well... and to talk to so many great members of the KKK. It is a hard struggle to bring a united white brotherhood to England. But one that is worth it. I send respect to all brothers and sisters in all parts of the white nation.”

According to a German newspaper, the European White Knights of the Burning Cross have recently printed copies of the Klan bible, called the Klorane.German and English language versions have been distributed to members.

A video posted in February on their site shows 14 robed Klansmen burning a cross to stirring background music in Grabow, Germany.

They were all wearing gloves so it is not clear whether Hopgood took part in the ceremony.

One Klansman shouts in German: “White Power”. The group responds in chorus: “White Power.”

The arms of the men and women are then raised in a Hitler salute. An entry next to the video, written in German, signs off with: “Our life is for the cross. The cross is our life!...Become a member of our Brotherhood. Rev Imperial Wizard.”

Yesterday the Mirror paid Hopgood a visit but was told he was not home. Five minutes after we left, Hopgood called our reporter claiming he was not a member of the Ku Klux Klan.

When asked why he was dressed in a hood and the full Klan uniform, appearing in photos alongside KKK leaders from Europe, he claimed: “I do it for my personal jollies.”

Hopgood added: “I have no views on the KKK. The fact that I have my political views is known by 99.9% of my customers.

“One of the royals dressed as a Nazi stormtrooper, but that does not make him a Nazi. I am not a member of the Ku Klux Klan and I am not recruiting in England, Scotland or Wales.”

A spokesman for anti-extremist organization Hope Not Hate said he was shocked the KKK had a ­presence in the UK.

He declared: “It’s chilling to see the KKK bringing their message of hate to the heart of England.

“It shows how far the tentacles of international extremism have spread. This is why we must all remain vigilant to prevent racists getting a stranglehold on our ­communities.”

In 2009, the BNP demanded a former Klan leader be allowed into Britain.

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith had put ex-KKK Grand Wizard Don Black on a blacklist of extremists but Mr Griffin urged her to let him in. He said: “The only people who can be kept out are those who inflict violence, which Don Black has not.”

But in 1981, Black had been found in possession of weapons and ammunition and was jailed for three years. And Griffin was photographed with the white supremacist in New Orleans in 2005 and Washington in 2006.

Daily Mirror

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Far Right Party's 'Fascist Goat' Mascot Snatched (Switzerland)

A goat used as a mascot by a far-right political party in Switzerland has been kidnapped by left-wing rivals just a week before the country's General Election.

Zottel has been used in political hustings and campaigns since 2006 by the Swiss People's Party (SVP).

But sometime during the night of October 14, he and another goat were snatched from their stable in Zurich, at the home of Swiss MP Ernst Schibli.

Mr Schibli said he had received an anonymous letter with death threats to "fascist goat Zottel" this summer.

Left-wing group Anti-Fascist Action have claimed responsibility for the kidnapping in a statement posted on the internet - which the SVP responded to by issuing a statement demanding Zottel's return.

Zottel rose to fame in the 2007 election campaign, when he became a key figure thanks to his starring role in online games.

In the games, he expelled illegal migrants from the country, prevented them from becoming Swiss citizens and fired a crossbow at European officials which the party claimed were "seeking to steal money from Swiss taxpayers".

The SVP won 28.9% of the vote in 2007 and are expected to score a record 30% of the vote this year.

Police in Zurich say they are investigating several leads.

Sky News

Parents slam school over 'racist' game (Sweden)

The parents of children who attend a primary school in Valais in southern Switzerland have complained over the use of a game entitled "Who’s afraid of the black man?", a hide-and-seek game they argue is “racist".

Hedi Putallaz, the parent of a pupil at a primary school in Monthey first became aware of the game, used by teachers in a gymnastics class, back in 2010.

He complained to the head of the school, who instructed the teachers to suggest that the game should instead be called "The wolf in sheep’s clothing", according to a report in the La Tribune de Genève daily.

But in a recent class, one of Putallaz’s son’s teachers again suggested playing the game entitled "Who’s afraid of the black man?"

According to the head of the school, the staff member concerned was an external coordinator, so he was not aware of the directive.

This was however the final straw for Putallaz and his wife, who is of afro-American origin. Now the couple want the educational authorities in Valais to issue an “official directive” to change the name of the game in all the schools in the canton, where it is still widely used.

“The Valais should not be considered the Mississipi of Switzerland,” say the parents in their request to the cantonal authorities because they consider the game to be a throwback to a racist past many blacks had to overcome.

“If the game was called ‘Are you afraid of the Jew’or ‘of the homosexual’, how would people react?” Putallaz said.

Jean-François Lovey, chief of the Department of Education of Valais, is yet to review, but he told La Tribune de Genève that he does not see the situation in the same way: “Honestly, it is a harmless game,” he said.

“The reasoning of these parents shows the extreme [political] correctness of our society,” Lovey added.

The Putallaz family is now awaiting a resolution from the educational authorities in Valais, but they have already warned that if their petition is not accepted, they will bring the issue in front of  the European Court of Human Rights.

The Local Switzerland

Mindless EDL thugs storm Muslim exhibition in Cradley Heath market (UK)

A Muslim book stall in Cradley Heath market was stormed by over 25 thugs from the English Defence League this weekend.

The shocking attack occurred in front of shoppers, many of which were women and children, at the market at 2.30pm on Saturday.

The local Ahmadiyya Muslim book stall and Qur’an exhibition was attacked and volunteers were manhandled and abused by members of the Far Right organisation.

Shocked Ahmadiyya outreach worker Toby Ephram described the scene in the market.

He said: “About 25 of the EDL group stormed our stall in Cradley Heath pushing, shoving and threatening our members.”

“We have the book stall to raise awareness of our work in Britain and in the local community we are proud to be British Muslims and this incident saddened us.

“Our motto is ‘Love for All - Hatred for None’ and we do not meet violence with violence so we just stood there and did not respond to the provocation.”

He added: “I’d like to thank the police for responding to the problem so quickly and controlling the situation and we will be back as usual at the market on Saturday.”

Last week the News reported the Muslim group was setting up the stall and exhibition in a bid to ‘increase understanding and improve community cohesion’.

Halesowen and Rowley Regis MP James Morris condemned the incident and branded it an ignorant and mindless attack.

He said: “The people storming the stall may claim that they are defending their English identity, but tolerance for other people’s views and beliefs has long been a key part of what it means to be English.

“The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Cradley Heath actively works to help different sections of our society to live peacefully alongside each other, whatever their religion.”

He added: “This mindless attack is absolutely deplorable and can only have been caused by ignorance of the views and action of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community locally.”

A spokesman for West Midlands Police said: “We were called at 1.40pm with reports of people causing a disturbance in the Market Square area of Cradley Heath. “Officers attended the scene and the groups dispersed.”

On Boxing Day 2009 Cradley Heath Mosque and Islamic Centre in Plant Street was burnt to the ground by arsonists.

Halesowen News

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Neo-Nazi boss to appeal to top court for hotel ban (Germany)

Udo Voigt
Udo Voigt, chairman of the far-right National Demcrocratic Party, is preparing to appeal to the German Federal Court of Justice (BGH) in Karlsruhe, after he was allegedly barred from a hotel for his political views.

Voigt's wife booked four days in the Hotel Esplanade in the eastern German spa town of Bad Saarow in December 2009, but the hotel refused to accept the booking, saying that Voigt's "political beliefs" meant that the hotel could not fulfil its aim of "providing every single guest with an excellent wellness experience."

Voigt's legal complaints have been unsuccessful so far, and according to a report on news magazine Der Spiegel's website on Sunday, he is planning to appeal to the BGH next Friday.

His lawyer countered the hotel's decision by saying that other guests could be disturbed by the presence of "black Africans, Muslims and severely disabled people."

But, Voigt's lawyer said, "in a free democracy, our citizens are expected to show tolerance that some people might consider an imposition." Otherwise a democratic society cannot function, "because there would be too many moves towards discrimination, and at the end we have a fractured society without solidarity."

The hotel's lawyer argued that Voigt was demanding "tolerance that neither he nor the NPD extend to others."

The Local Germany

Ukrainian street renamed after pro-Nazi battalion 'shameful' - PM

A Ukrainian town's decision to rename a street after a battalion that fought alongside the Nazis during World War II is shameful, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said on Friday.

"I was shocked. It's hard to imagine such things taking place in our country... It's a shame for our country," Azarov said.

Peace Street in the village of Razliv in western Ukraine's Lvov region was renamed Nachtigall Battalion Warriors Street.

Two battalions, Nachtigall and Roland, were formed from ethnic Ukrainians in Nazi-occupied Poland in February 1941. They were among the first units to invade the Soviet Union in June 1941, but were disbanded in August after Germany failed to declare an independent Ukraine.

Shortly after Nazi troops entered Ukraine in June 1941, nationalist leader Stepan Bandera called on Ukrainians "to help the German army in defeating Moscow and Bolshevism." On June 30 the Nachtigall Battalion entered Lvov. The documentary record shows that its members committed atrocities against the Jewish population.

The street renaming was initiated by the nationalist Svoboda (Freedom) party and supported by members of Yulia Tymoshenko's party.

The Russian Foreign Ministry condemned the move and said it hoped that the street's original name would be restored.

The pro-presidential Party of Regions has already asked the Prosecutor General's Office to study the case and give a legal assessment.

Ukrainian society is deeply divided over the wartime role of the country's nationalists, namely the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and its militant wing, the UPA. One part, mostly residents of the eastern regions bordering Russia, believe UPA fighters were traitors who killed Soviet soldiers, while another, mainly residents of western Ukraine, regard them as patriots who fought for an independent Ukraine.

On October 14, the anniversary of the UPA's founding, up to 30,000 Ukrainians - nationalists and communists - are expected to march in Kiev in two opposing rallies for and against the UPA.

The Ukrainian nationalist movement also demands that President Viktor Yanukovych approve construction of monuments to Cossack Hetman Ivan Mazepa and UPA leaders Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevych in Kiev.

They also want October 14 to be declared a national holiday - The Defender of the Fatherland's Day. The holiday's name and origin are a clear reference to a national holiday in Russia, which bears the same name and marks the first mass draft into the Red Army.

RIA Novosti

Thursday, 13 October 2011

'Racist couple murdered parents then crossed US hunting for Jews'

A white supremacist couple face the death penalty after allegedly being caught on their way to kill "more Jews" following a two-week manhunt in which at least three people were murdered.

David Pederson, 31, and his girlfriend Holly Grigsby, 24, were arrested north of Sacremento, California. An arsenal of loaded handguns and rifles was found in their vehicle.

Their alleged victims include Pederson's stepmother, Leslie Pederson, 69. Her body was found in her home near Puget Sound in Washington state, with her hands bound by duct tape, her head wrapped in a pillow soaked in blood and a sword lying nearby.

Yesterday the pair appeared at Yuba County Court, Marysville, California. The court heard Grigsby had confessed that after killing Pederson's stepmother they murdered his 56-year-old father by shooting him in the back of the head as he drove them to a bus station.

They then drove to Oregon where, Grigsby told police, they killed 19-year-old Cody Myers after mistakenly concluding that his last name meant he was Jewish. The couple were driving Myers's car when captured. Both have known links to white supremacist groups and Pederson has a prominent White Power tattoo on his neck.

After their arrest, Grigsby allegedly said that she and Pederson were on their way to Sacramento to "kill more Jews". They have also been named as suspects in the murder of Reginald Clark, a 53-year-old black man, whose body was found in a car in Eureka, California.

In an interview from jail, Pederson - who has spent most of his adult life in prison - claimed he killed his father because he believed he had sexually molested his sister and cousin.

Police think Mrs Pederson was killed because they thought she knew of the abuse but did not stop it. No proof has been found that the molestation happened.

Prosecutor Mark Roe said the pair face charges of aggravated first-degree murder and warned the killings in Oregon and California could also be prosecuted as hate crimes.

Pederson and Grigsby are being held in prison before extradition to Washington after bail was set at $1million each.

This is London

Migrants living in fear after racist bomb attack on Poles (Northern Ireland)

A campaign of attacks against foreign nationals living in Antrim could force some to flee the area, it has been claimed.

The warning came after a pipe-bomb was left on the windowsill of a Polish couple's home at Seacash Drive yesterday. Community representatives said it was the latest in a series of incidents targeting foreigners in the town.

The alert began around 8am yesterday and saw the Parkhall Road closed and nearby homes evacuated for several hours. A PSNI spokesperson confirmed that a viable device had been taken away for examination.

UUP councillor Adrian Watson said he was hopeful that the family would stay in Antrim.

“They are giving it a lot of thought, although they are obviously very shaken,” he said.

There have been other racist attacks recently in Antrim.

“Last week a mob attacked a house belonging to foreign nationals and put the windows in, and the same night graffiti went up saying that foreigners were not welcome,” said Mr Watson. “There is no justification for it.”

Maciek Bator from the Polish Association warned that some foreign residents may leave.

“Some people will decide to move out of this area and some will decide to move out of Northern Ireland,” he said.

“They will take a bad image of Northern Ireland with them.”

A loyalist group claimed responsibility for the attack in a call to a news organisation. Progressive Unionist Party Ken Wilkinson — whose own home was targeted in a pipe-bomb attack last year — visited the family and apologised for what had happened.

He said: “These people carried this out in the name of loyalism, these people are loyal to nothing. These people are just bigots.”

Graffiti attacking the PUP — calling it the ‘Polish Unity Party’ — has also appeared in the area.

PSNI area commander Chief Inspector Natalie Wilson appealed information about the attack.

Belfast Telegraph

Monday, 10 October 2011

Two detained after neo-Nazi provocation in Ústí nad Labem (Czech Republic)

Led by the convicted con artist Lukáš Kohout, right-wing extremists from the Workers' Social Justice Party (Dělnická strana sociální spravedlnosti - DSSS) and other neo-Nazi groups, 300 - 400 people marched through Ústí nad Labem today. The anti-Romani gathering was convened by locals, allegedly to support the rights of "decent" citizens against "the parasitism of inadaptables."

The crowd did not deviate from its planned route. At one place, neo-Nazis and approximately 10 opponents of neo-Nazism and racism yelled at one another. As many as 50 police officers kept them apart. Two demonstrators wore neo-Nazi slogans on their coats.

There were 100 state police officers, 100 municipal police, and members of an anti-conflict team deployed on the streets of the town. A police helicopter flew overhead and mounted police and police dogs were also on standby.

Several promoters of the DSSS arrived in town carrying flags. The gathering started with speeches by the organizers on the square: Convener Milan Sůra, right-wing extremists from the DSSS, and convicted con artist Lukáš Kohout, who has convened similar marches in Varnsdorf. The crowd then marched through the town. The organizers planned the route to lead from Mírové Square down Velká Hradební street to the Hotel Vladimír, returning to Lidické náměstí along Masarykova street. Along the way, people chanted the slogan "Stop Black Racism" and nationalist slogans such as "Bohemia for the Czechs" or "Nothing but the Nation". They bore banners referencing the attacks allegedly committed by Romani people in Nový Bor and Rumburk, which sparked the recent unrest the neo-Nazis are now exploiting.

Right-wing extremists from the DSSS and convicted con artist Lukáš Kohout occupied the head of the march. "That is exactly what the initiator of this event probably didn't want. It looks like the protest has gotten away from his control and party members have taken over this initiative," a reporter for Czech daily Mf DNES said.

An incident occurred at a point along the march route near a closed-down restaurant where local anarchists usually meet. They had hung a banner on the building reading "Nationalism is kitsch" which the marchers tore down. About 10 opponents of neo-Nazis and racism had to be separated from the protesting crowd by about 50 special forces police. The groups shouted at one another for several minutes before the crowd continued its march without further clashes. After roughly an hour and a half, the conveners of the march officially ended it on Lidické Square and people started to disperse.

Police detained two ultra-right radicals for interrogation. "They were wearing illegal slogans on their coats, but it's too early to say whether they have committed a crime or a misdemeanor," said Jarmila Hrubešová, spokesperson for the Ústí police. News server iDNES.cz reports that the men were wearing the English-language phrase "Blood and Honor", the name of an originally British neo-Nazi organization established in 1987 by a singer with the Nazi band Skrewdriver, Ian Stuart. The name was taken from the battle cry of the Hitler Youth. The group defines itself as a "Nationalist Revolutionary Movement" espousing the legacy of the Third Reich.

Early this morning, police discovered and removed a cache of paving stones and wooden tool-handles in a cellar along the march route. Mounds of paving stones were also found on Velká hradební street. Before noon, police also arrested a man armed with a machete. Vladimír Danyluk, the head of the Ústí nad Labem territory, said police had been monitoring all access roads to the town since morning but did not discover any more weapons.

At 13:30, a similar rally was held in Varnsdorf (Děčín district), where people were protesting for the ninth weekend in a row. Police spokesperson Daniel Vítek said the situation in the town was completely calm. About 150 people met on the town square, but did not march anywhere. The conveners of the demonstration once again criticized the Mayor of Varnsdorf, Martin Louka.


Racist-attacks pair are jailed for a year (EDL, UK)

Two former English Defence League members are beginning year-long jail sentences after racist attacks at a mosque and two Asian-run businesses.

Steven James Vasey and Anthony Donald Smith launched their offensive after incidents at a war memorial in Luton on Armistice Day last November, where poppies were burnt by extreme Islamic groups.

On the eve of Muslim festival Eid, the masked men, along with an accomplice, climbed a fence at the Nasir mosque in Hartlepool.

The letters “EDL” and “NEI”, for the North East Infidels, were sprayed along with “no surrender” and images of poppies and the St George flag.

Prosecutor Chris Baker told Durham Crown Court that a taxi seen in the area at the time was similar to a vehicle spotted later in Potto Street in Shotton Colliery, where an upstairs window of the Milco store was smashed with a brick.

Similar graffiti to that left on the mosque was sprayed on the shop and the nearby Albert Guest House, which are both owned by an Asian businessman.

Mr Baker told Recorder William Lowe there was an irony that the store was selling poppies when the attack was carried out.

He said taxi driver Smith, 24, of Rydale Court, Trimdon, previously of Neptune Way, Easington Colliery, was arrested the next day.

Messages on his mobile showed planning with then-girlfriend Charlotte Christina Davies and Vasey and included claims they were going “Muzzy bashing” and were going togive the mosque a “makeover”.

Smith, Vasey, 32, formerly of Pittington and now of Eden Crescent, Darlington, and Davies, 19, of Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, all admitted conspiracy to commit racially aggravated criminal damage.

Stephen Constantine, representing Smith, said he showed a “lack ofinsight” into the consequences and it had been prompted by the poppy burning.

Shaun Dryden, mitigating for Vasey, said his actions were foolish.

Jane Waugh, mitigating on behalf of Davies, said her involvement came to text messages offering encouragement.

She was given a 12-week sentence, suspended for a year, and 200 hours’ unpaid work.

The barristers said all three had severed their ties with the EDL.

Jailing the men, Judge Lowe remarked that the attacks were carried out in the wake of the Luton incident.

He said: “It may be that was something these three had in mind, but it does not excuse this conduct.

He added: “It’s the sort of behaviour from which those who are militant feed.”

After the hearing, Inspector Dave Coxon, of Peterlee Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “I’m pleased that this has gone to court and they pleaded guilty and the sentence reflects the serious nature of the offence.

“We continue to take these sorts of offences seriously and we will strive to support all members of the community.”

Sunderland Echo

100 Detained in Moscow amid nationalist rally call (Russia)

Police in Moscow have detained about 100 people suspected of planning a nationalist rally near the Kremlin. Police spokesman Anatoly Lastovetsky said some of those detained on Manezh Square were carrying weapons including pistols that fire rubber bullets. A heavy contingent of police was deployed in and around the sprawling square after calls appeared on the Internet for an unauthorized gathering to mark the death a week ago of an 18-year-old in a nightclub fight between a group of soccer fans and men of Caucasus descent.

Violence between ethnic Russians and people from the Caucasus is frequent. In December, about 5,000 people chanting "Russia for Russians" gathered at Manezh Square and beat dark-skinned passers-by. That gathering was a reaction to the killing of a Russian soccer fan during a fight with people from the Caucasus.

Associated Press

BNP facing accusations of fraud (UK)

The British National Party is under investigation by the European Union and the Metropolitan Police for alleged fraud and breaches of electoral law.

The dual investigations come as a former BNP administrator told the BBC's Panorama programme that she was instructed to falsify invoices.

Those invoices were then submitted by the BNP to the Electoral Commission.

The BNP has strongly denied any suggestion of wrongdoing.

The allegations come as the party struggles with debts run up during the 2010 general election campaign.

'Invoices faked'Internal party documents seen by Panorama reveal that 12 months ago the BNP owed creditors more than £570,000. Party chairman Nick Griffin recently said the party now owes just £52,000.

Former party worker Marion Thomas said after the 2010 general election she was instructed by the party's treasurer, Clive Jefferson, to alter invoices and in at least one case stamp an outstanding invoice as "paid".

The invoices were submitted to the Electoral Commission and had been altered, Mrs Thomas said, in order for it to appear that the BNP had complied with the law on election spending.

Asked how she felt about doing this, Mrs Thomas said: "I made my objections known."

She added: "You can't do that, you cannot do that. That is fraud."

Mr Jefferson told the programme that Mrs Thomas' allegations are "untrue".

Mrs Thomas, who now works for Britain First, a rival political organisation, has since been interviewed about her claims by detectives from the Metropolitan Police who are investigating alleged breaches of electoral law by the BNP.

That investigation began after Richard Barnbrook, who used to be the BNP member of the London Assembly and Mr Griffin's 2010 election agent, went to the High Court to say that he had submitted printing invoices totalling nearly £10,000 as paid when they too were outstanding.

Mr Griffin also signed those returns. Both he and Mr Barnbrook, who has since been expelled from the party and now sits as an independent in London, have said they acted in good faith, believing the bills had indeed been paid.

The High Court judge has referred the case the Director of Public Prosecutions and the Metropolitan Police were notified.

'Cash cow'
Another former party worker, Alistair Barbour, was recruited to Mr Griffin's European staff after he and one other BNP candidate were elected members of the European Parliament in 2009.

Mr Barbour was hired to work on European Parliament business and was to be paid out of the £260,000 pot of EU money that each MEP has available to them to pay for staff and expenses.

He told the programme that some money intended for MEP business was diverted to help bolster the party itself.

"Europe was the big cash cow you know, 'let's get our noses in the trough and see what we can get out and... see what we can fund the party with,'" he said of the approach to the MEP funds.

He added: "This is what it was all about, party work and just trying to figure out what expenses we could get out of the European Union."

Other party insiders have told the programme that at one point electricity from Nick Griffin's European constituency headquarters on an industrial estate in rural Cumbria was siphoned to the unit next door which served as the BNP's national headquarters.

When the European Parliament's fraud unit, OLAF, travelled to Cumbria five months later to investigate the allegations they found no evidence of an electricity scam but Panorama understands that they continue to investigate other allegations of misuse of European money by the BNP.

The BNP has denied using money from the European Union to fund national party work.

Panorama: BNP - The Fraud Exposed, BBC One, Monday, 10 October at 2030BST and then available in the UK on the

Friday, 7 October 2011

German prosecutors to prosecute dozens of former Nazis

Conviction of Jon Demjanjuk prompted the reopening of investigations against guards who worked in Holocaust extermination camps.

The criminal conviction of Nazi concentration guard John Demjanjuk in May prompted German prosecutors on Wednesday to reopen dozens of investigations and cases against guards who worked in the vast set of extermination camps during the Holocaust.

The German authorities announced the new prosecutions on Wednesday, according to media reports.

The 91-year-old Ukranianborn Demjanjuk was deported from the US to Germany in 2009. A Munich court convicted him in May of 28,060 counts of accessory to murder for working as a guard at the Sobibor death camp in Nazi-occupied Poland.

Demjanjuk’s attorney has appealed the conviction.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center on Thursday hailed the decision by German prosecutors to open criminal investigations against dozens of former guards at Nazi concentration camps.

Efraim Zuroff, from the Wiesenthal Center, said he welcomed efforts to bring former guards to justice based on the precedent of John Demjanjuk, found guilty of being an accessory to murder for the time he was guarding Treblinka concentration camp.

Zuroff, who is widely considered to be world’s leading hunter of Nazis, told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday that “The Demjanjuk conviction has created the possibility to prosecute perhaps as many as several dozen Holocaust perpetrators who served in the most lethal Nazi installations and units, and basically spent as much as two years carrying out mass murder on practically a daily basis.

He added that “These were the persons who carried out the major bulk of the mass murder of European Jews during the Holocaust – practically half of the approximately six million Jewish victims.”

Kurt Schrimm, the head of the Central Office for the Investigation of Nazi Crimes in Germany (Zentrale Stelle) said: “We don’t want to wait too long, so we’ve already begun our investigations,” according to a Guardian news report on Wednesday.

This item continues at  Jewish World

BNP man faces gun charges (UK)

A former parish councillor and BNP activist has appeared in court on firearms charges.

The trial of David Lucas, 51, of South Road, Lakenheath, began at Ipswich Crown Court on Wednesday.

Lucas is charged with possessing a gun capable of firing flares 500ft into the air – labelled ‘potentially lethal’ by prosecutors. He is also charged with having ammunition for the gun which he purchased more than three years ago in Alaska.

On Wednesday, jurors were shown the orange gun, made largely from plastic, which still bears a $24.99 price sticker.

Martyn Levett, prosecuting, told the court that police had arrested Lucas after searching Black Dyke Farm, in Hockwold, on August 18 last year. Officers found the gun and ammunition on a shelf inside a portable building.

Experts examined the items and decided the gun and ammunition were, under the 1968 Firearms Act, items which required a firearms certificate to possessf.

Lucas, who admitted he did not hold a firearms certificate, challenged whether the items were covered by the Firearms Act and claims he was not holding them illegally.

Mr Levett said the gun, an Orion Signal Launcher, was found with 11 flares of a 12 bore size.

“If carelessly pointed at someone the effect would be potentially lethal,” he said.

He added that a second firearms expert had also examined the gun and agreed that it was covered by the Firearms Act.

Lucas stood as a BNP candidate in the European elections in 2009 and has previously served on Lakenheath Parish Council.

In June last year he was given a one year prison sentence suspended for one year for possessing ammunition and gunpowder.

The trial is expected to finish today.

Bury Free Press

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Judge orders house custody of far-right activist Budahazy (Hungary)

The municipal court of Budapest released radical nationalist activist Gyorgy Budahazy, who is accused of terrorist activities, from pre-trial detention and into house custody on Friday. The prosecutor appealed against the decision, but this appeal will not delay implementation of the ruling. Budahazy will be placed in house custody until the municipal appellate court rules in the second instance. In his reasoning, the judge said it was uncertain how long the procedure would go on and suggested that its aims could be achieved through house custody rather than pre-trial detention. Budahazy’s lawyer had appealed for his client’s release, referring to an professional opinion stating that the defendant’s two young daughters had not seen their father for two years, causing them an irreparable loss. He added that his client loved his homeland and family and would not go into hiding to evade the proceedings. Budahazy had been in custody since June 2009.

He was arrested under charges of setting up a gang – the Hunnia Movement modelling itself on the Irish Republican Army – in early 2007 to carry out attacks against members of parliament, thereby exerting pressure on lawmaking. Later that year the gang allegedly fired shots and threw petrol bombs at the homes of lawmakers Istvan Hiller and Janos Koka, as well as making similar attacks in several locations in the countryside in February 2008. The group also threw Molotov cocktails at gay bars and outlets, such as a ticket office in Budapest’s 13th district. The court is expected to resume hearing Budahazy’s case in November.


Ex EDL members targeted Hartlepool mosque and Shotton Colliery store (UK)

Two former English Defence League (EDL) members daubed “racially offensive” material on a mosque and two Asian-run businesses in revenge for the burning of poppies by an extreme Islamic group.

Steven James Vasey, 32, and 24-year-old Anthony Donald Smith were yesterday jailed for a year for their attack, which followed incidents at a war memorial in Luton on Armistice Day last November.

Days later, on the eve of the Muslim Eid festival to mark the end of Ramadan, the masked men, along with an accomplice, climbed a fence after dark at the Nasir Mosque, in Brougham Street, Hartlepool.

The initials EDL and NEI – North-East Infidels – as well as the words “no surrender”, the cross of St George and figures of red poppies, were sprayed before two figures were seen fleeing the premises.

Chris Baker, prosecuting at Durham Crown Court, said a taxi seen in the area at the time was similar to a vehicle spotted later in Potto Street, Shotton Colliery, County Durham, where an upstairs window at the Milco convenience store was put out with a brick.

Similar graffiti to that sprayed at the mosque was daubed at both the shop and the nearby Albert Guest House, in Front Street, both run by an Asian businessman.

Mr Baker told the court: “There’s a certain irony in that the targeted store was selling poppies at the time.”

He said Smith, who drove for the taxi company and had links to the EDL, was arrested the following day.

Messages found on his phone revealed him planning with Vasey and a third accused, Smith’s girlfriend at the time, Charlotte Christina Davies, who he met at an EDL rally in Amsterdam earlier in the year.

Mr Baker said the text messages included claims they were going “Muzzy bashing” and that the mosque was going to be given “a makeover”.

Vasey, formerly of Pittington, near Durham City, but now of Eden Crescent, Darlington; Smith, of Rydale Court, Trimdon Station, County Durham and Davies, 19, of Aylesbury, in Buckinghamshire, all admitted conspiracy to commit racially aggravated criminal damage.

Shaun Dryden, for Vasey, said it had been a “foolish venture”.

Stephen Constantine, for Smith, said he had, “a lack of insight” into the consequences of his actions, which were caused through his outrage at the poppy burning.

Jane Waugh, for Davies, said her involvement was merely text messages encouraging Davies’ involvement.

Barristers for all three said they have now severed their ties with the EDL.

Jailing Vasey and Davies, Recorder William Lowe told them: “It’s said this was carried out for what some extremists did on Armistice Day in Luton, as seen on TV.

“It may be that was something these three had in mind, but it does not excuse this conduct. It’s the sort of behaviour from which those who are militant feed.”

Davies was given a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for a year, with 200-hours’ unpaid work.

Darlington and Stockton Times

Monday, 3 October 2011

Jobbik splinter party officially launched; returns focus to Roma (Hungary)

Several former leading members of Jobbik announced the official launching of a new splinter party on Friday, nol.hu reports.

The Magyar Főnix Mozgalom (Hungarian Phoenix Movement, MFM) was initially formed in April but was only registered with the courts on September 15.

MFM chairman Tibor József Biber, who was deputy chairman of Jobbik until 2008, told the press that the new party would provide an alternative with voters disillusioned with Jobbik, which he said had been “eroded” from inside.

While in August Bíber criticized Jobbik for excessively focusing on questions relating to Hungary’s Roma minority – which he said could lead to a “civil war” – the new party appears to be putting a high priority on the issue, making it one of the most prominent points in its founding declaration.

At the news conference Bíber said that none of the governments of Hungary formed since the political system change had managed to solve the serious problem of “ethnic crime” – which he said could be called “Gypsy crime,” and disproportionately impacted those living in the countryside.

He said the exact size of Hungary’s Roma population should be known before their problems can be solved. The party’s deputy chair, Anna Szöőr, added that it was in the interest of the Roma population to “admit” their ethnicity in the national census launched this past weekend, otherwise researchers would again be force to work with false statistical data.


Wilders' 'mentor' thinks he is exaggerating (Netherlands)

Twenty years ago, VVD politician Frits Bolkestein said it is impossible for immigrants to integrate while maintaining their cultural identity. Back then, the prominent liberal was severely criticised. Now, Mr Bolkestein is seen as a forerunner of anti-Islam Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders. But the former VVD leader and European Commissioner does not share his ‘successor’s’ views.

The 78-year-old statesman may look a little frail, but he still works full time. In his office overlooking the river Amstel, he reflects on the commotion his comments caused in the early 1990s.

“I mainly objected to the Dutch government’s slogan ‘Integration while keeping your cultural identity’. I thought it was ridiculous: if you integrate, you lose part of your identity. I said immigrants have to conform to the essential values of the Dutch culture."

These values are: freedom of religion, the separation of church and state, freedom of speech, and sexual equality. Looking back, the comments were not all that shocking, says the former VVD leader. “Nevertheless, it caused a lot of commotion, but maybe it was necessary.”

Now, former fellow party member Geert Wilders is winning votes for his Freedom Party, which he set up in 2006 with extreme views against immigration and Islam. Mr Bolkestein is sometimes called his mentor, but says he does not share his views. “Wilders says things that are just not right and I think he totally exaggerates.”

Mr Bolkestein once suggested in a leaked private conversation that orthodox Jews should consider moving to Israel or the United States, because of the anti-Semitism amongst Moroccans. Mr Wilders says the opposite; it is the Moroccans that should leave the Netherlands.

Recently, Mr Bolkestein wrote a book about ‘dangerous ideas in politics’. The book explains how rash ideas that have not been tested in practice can lead to chaos, abuses and worse. Nevertheless, Mr Bolkestein does not think Mr Wilders’ ideas have much influence outside his supporters. Mr Wilders supports the current government in parliament, but does not have any executive power. “There is little chance that Moroccans will be deported en masse,” he says resolutely.

Burka ban
Mr Wilders repeatedly says the Netherlands threatens to be overrun by a “tsunami of Islamists”. But, says Mr Bolkestein, he is wrong. Birth rates among immigrants are falling fast. For instance, Turkish women are already having fewer children than Dutch women. Mr Bolkestein also stresses that Muslim women are doing well at university, clearly showing they are catching up with their Dutch counterparts.

However, there are still big problems concerning integration, such as the high unemployment and crime rates among immigrant youths as well as anti-Semitism and homophobia.

Mr Bolkestein disagrees with the recent introduction of a burka ban, an idea championed by Geert Wilders. The Netherlands is the third European country to introduce such a ban after France and Belgium. “A ban makes martyrs of the few burka wearers there are in the Netherlands. You should avoid that,” he says, knowing all too well that it was his own party that proposed the ban.

 Radio Netherlands

Two Alberta men jailed for racially-motivated assaults (Canada)

Two Alberta men are going to jail after pleading guilty to their parts in a series of racially-motivated assaults in Edmonton earlier this year.

David Roger Goodman, 19, and James Andrew Brooks, 25, admitted on Friday to being among a group of four men who shouted racial slurs and attacked several black people in downtown Edmonton on February 12.

The accused admitted to distributing flyers that promoted a white supremacist group called "Blood and Honour." The men also admitted to going to several bars in the Whyte Avenue area and threatening black people with violence.

In one downtown bar the group sang Nazi-themed songs, shouted "White Power" and hassled non-white patrons and anyone who appeared to be homosexual, according to Crown prosecutors.

The Crown had alleged that on the evening of Feb. 12, Goodman attacked a black man, knocking him to the ground and punching him repeatedly. Brooks was alleged to have punched a young woman in the face while wearing a glove adorned with hard plastic knuckles.

Goodman was sentenced to 15 months in jail and 12 months probation after pleading guilty to two counts of criminal harassment, two counts of assault and causing a disturbance.

Brooks was given 13 months in jail after pleading guilty to two counts of criminal harassment, assault and assault with a weapon and causing a disturbance.

Two other men, Jason Anthony Anderson and Keith Virgil Decu, both 32, have been charged with criminal harassment, mischief, cause disturbance, and assault.


Still battling blackshirts (UK)

We still feel the threat of the far right here, in Tower Hamlets, where the Battle of Cable Street was fought 75 years ago

In the London borough of Tower Hamlets on Tuesday we will be commemorating the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street. This was a momentous day in the history of London's East End, when Oswald Mosley and his blackshirts were driven out of the then mainly Jewish area by demonstrators whose slogan was "They shall not pass!". Joining us on this anniversary – one in which I will unveil the restored Battle of Cable Street mural – will be a veteran of that day, Max Levitas.

What I suspect unites the very different racial and religious communities in the historic diaspora that is Tower Hamlets is a sense of revulsion at bigotry and racism, wherever it comes from. This is why so many people came together recently to protest at the outrageous plan by the far right English Defence League to march through the same area that Mosley's blackshirts had been ejected from. With the support of local MPs, councillors and religious leaders, as well as many outside the borough, we persuaded the Metropolitan police and the home secretary to ban the march.

So I was shocked to read recently that Adrian Tudway, the police's national co-ordinator for domestic extremism, said he had formed the view that the EDL was not extreme after reading its website. According to the Guardian's report, Tudway sent an email in April, urging a Muslim group to open up a "line of dialogue" with the EDL. He wrote: "In terms of the position with EDL, the original stance stands, they are not extreme rightwing as a group, indeed, if you look at their published material on their website they are actively moving away from the right and violence with their mission statement. As we discussed last time, I really think you need to open a direct line of dialogue with them and redirect their activity?"

At best this shows alarming naivety. At worst it demonstrates a callous disregard for those who have been on the receiving end of EDL violence. Disturbingly this came from a man whose unit was charged with investigating any links between the rightwing Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik and the EDL. Breivik boasted of having 600 EDL supporters as Facebook friends and said in his deranged 1,500-word manifesto that he had spoken with EDL members and supporters. This information should surely have been sobering enough for Tudway, and encouraged him to venture beyond the EDL's website. Recently the Daily Mail exposed a stockpile of weaponry assembled by EDL members, which rather takes away from the idea that the organisation is a beacon of moderation.

In any event, if the EDL is on a journey of atonement why did the Met feel it necessary to deploy more than 3,000 officers in Tower Hamlets on the day the EDL had planned a march, despite the home secretary's ban?

What really links Breivik to the EDL is a corrosive Islamophobia, which to all intents and purposes is similar to the antisemitism that many experienced in my part of London in the last century. Not that this in any way excuses those who respond by twisting Islam into a fundamentalism that most in the community do not approve of and do not want. The trouble is, it would appear that the only focus for those attempting to tackle extremism in Britain through the government's Prevent programme are such people – while those who express similar sentiments on the far right are treated with kid gloves.

I was pleased then to see that Dan Hodges from the anti-fascism organisation Searchlight appreciates what really lies behind the EDL. He has said that the police should classify the EDL as extremist and linked to violence, and that they should spend more time and effort trying to thwart the group's plans. To that should be added recent comments by Zaheer Ahmad, of the National Association of Muslim Police, who noted that: "There is a strong perception in the Muslim communities that the police service does not take the threat of rightwing extremism seriously."

Here, in Tower Hamlets, we do take the EDL seriously. That is why, in the wake of repeated threats from that organisation, we want it reclassified as an extremist group, and banned from being allowed to march through our London borough again. That would be the best tribute of all to all those who drove Mosley and his blackshirts out of the East End so many years ago.

The Guardian

Serbia police detain 6 suspected extremists

Serbia's police say they have detained six people and prevented a gathering of a pro-Russian far-right group that threatened to burn an EU flag and spit on the portrait of the U.S. ambassador in Belgrade.

Riot police were deployed in large number across the capital Sunday to enforce a ban on a gay pride event and anti-gay protests, fearing they would turn violent.

Senior police official Srdjan Grekulovic says the six extremists were detained in central Belgrade with masks and baseball bats on them. He says police also prevented a protest on nearby Mount Avala by the Nasi group — an affiliate of a Russian organization of the same name.

Meanwhile, an EU official and other supporters attended an in-room gathering of gay activists.