TIMESONLINE…Police have arrested 34 people amid tense scenes at an anti-Islamic demonstration in central Manchester.
The English Defence League (EDL), which opposes “radical Muslims” and Sharia Law, staged the protest, but the anti-far right group Unite Against Fascism (UAF) arranged a counter demonstration bringing both sides together in the city centre .
Twenty-five men were arrested on suspicion of public order offences, three for affray and three on suspicion of possessing an offensive weapon, one of whom was also arrested on suspicion of possessing drugs.
A further three men were held on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences. Police confirmed one man has received a minor injury, but did not need to attend hospital.
Earlier a 39-year-old man, who was believed to be travelling to Manchester, was arrested in Birmingham on suspicion of distributing racially aggravated material and possessing cocaine.
A heavy police line , including officers in full riot gear and on horseback, separated the rival groups as an estimated 2,000 people gathered on both sides of Piccadilly Gardens, at the heart of the city’s shopping centre. Officers imposed a lockdown in the area in an effort to contain the protestors.
Protestors some masked or covering their faces with scarves, chanted and surged at police lines. There was also reports of coin throwing, while others carried placards.
EDL supporters waved Union Flags and chanted “we love our country”. The UAF responded by shouting “fascist scum off our streets” and playing music through loud speakers.
Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan said: “The presence of so many protesters in the city has proved a challenge and while many have turned out to protest peacefully the police reaction has been necessary in order to prevent the few hell-bent on violent confrontation.”
The crowds were later dispersed and led away separately under police guard, as small-scale skirmishes broke out.
This from Times comment section on this story;
Laura Roberts wrote:
Hardly a surprise. It’s the start of Rivers of Blood.
I abhor racism: and that means racism from ALL sides. If you continue to impose one incoming race’s laws and preferences on the indigenous people of a country, you are going to create massive turmoil, disruption, antagonism, anger, resentment and confusion.
I have lived around the world. I know of no other country that welcomes foreigners into it that hate it with a venom. I know of no other country that destroys it’s own culture, traditions, values and everything that makes it that particular country, as we do when we try to change it to suit incomers. I know of no other country embarrassed of it’s own flag, where any patriotism that on the one hand we are urged to celebrate is slammed as racism at other times.
When I have lived around the world, I rejoice in their cultures and their pride for their country, heritage and customs. I modify my behaviour to theirs and even when I have to cover my head, or take off my shoes, or have to be escorted because a lone woman out and about is not permitted I do so unquestioningly so, and I honour their rules.
I know of no other country on earth that diminishes it’s own culture and gives in to the demands of visitors and newcomers that we must adapt to them, rather than the other way round. They would not do the same in their country.
And so we have a growing anger, sometimes irrational and extreme, but mostly highly rational and deserved, and it will only get worse until the traditions and culture of Britain is restored and celebrated, just as other countries do with theirs.
Failure to do so will result in carnage.