EDL leaders arrested close to East London Mosque
- Credit: PA
English Defence League leaders Tommy Robinson and Kevin Carroll were arrested in Tower Hamlets today, near the East London Mosque.
Robinson, the group’s leader, and co-leader Caroll were detained on suspicion of obstructing the police and attempting to enter the borough-with one of he capital’s biggest Muslim communities- despite being ordered to stay away by police.
Two members of the public were also arrested amid reports that the English Defence League pair had been attacked in Commercial Street, close to Aldgate East tube station.
Robinson and Carroll were attempting to stage what they claimed was a charity walk to Woolwich Barracks via the East London Mosque in Whitechapel Road.
The Metropolitan Police said yesterday that anyone trying to march to Woolwich would be arrested and imposed a route for the walk between Hyde Park Corner and ending at Old Palace Yard, opposite the House of Lords.
In a statement posted on the EDL’s Twitter feed, the group said: “Tommy Robinson & Kev Caroll arrested for obstructing the police and carted off.”
The statement claimed “negotiations” for their release were taking place and that the pair still hoped to walk to Woolwich to lay flowers.
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A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “At approximately 11.25am today, two men were arrested outside Aldgate East station for obstructing police.
“They have been taken to a south London police station. Two further men were arrested on suspicion of assault.
“They have been taken to an east London police station.”
As well as laying flowers in memory of Drummer Rigby in Woolwich, Mr Robinson and Mr Carroll were also walking to raise money for a young girl fighting against neuroblastoma.
Throughout the morning, the pair posted pictures on Twitter at London landmarks such as Buckingham Palace, The Mall and the July 7 Memorial in Hyde Park.
Scotland Yard yesterday said it was imposing conditions due to fears that both the march and gathering would “result in serious public disorder and serious disruption to the life of the community” and a breach of the conditions would be a criminal offence.
The police issued two notices under the Public Order Act based on “current community tensions, the current intelligence picture about Saturday and recent marches and protests held by similar groups”.