Counter protest planned against far right group march

Community and faith groups are planning a counter protest after a far right group announced plans to march in Tower Hamlets.

UK-wide group Unite Against Fascism has called on people to protest – under the banner of the East End’s No Place for hate campaign – against the English Defence League’s plans to march through the borough.

Ranging from community and faith groups to trade unions, they are joining forces as East End United for the counter event on August 27 – the same day as the planned EDL protest.

The EDL claims Tower Hamlets is under siege from radical Islamic forces and that someone has to take a stand. It’s a picture not recognised by chair of Tower Hamlets Inter-Faith Forum Rev Alan Green.

Rev Green, who is also chair of the No Place for Hate Forum, added: “It’s a chance for us to show we are a very diverse community and we have very good relations here. There are individuals who seek to cause trouble but they aren’t the majority.”

He said even if the EDL march doesn’t go ahead it will be a good opportunity to show what is “good about life here”.

A spokesman for the East London Mosque said it will face the threat as part of the East End United coalition.

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Tower Hamlets mayor Lutfur Rahman said he wanted to reassure residents that attempts to create fear and instability in the community will not be accepted.

Police confirmed they are aware of the planned EDL march.