Well done to all anti fascists out in Birmingham today!

11 10 2014

 

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AFN groups hooked up with Birmingham UAF, Birmingham Strong Justice4ALL, unions, community groups and many others under the ‘We Are Birmingham’ banner this Saturday 11th. People came out despite the rain to demonstrate in Victoria Square together, making clear we reject the EDL’s vile and divisive message. Everyone seemed to enjoy the live music and a chance meet new people. One topic that came up a lot was the Nobel Peace Prize awarded yesterday to Malala, a Pakistani schoolgirl and activist now living in Birmingham. A few EDL supporters turned up here: one tried to take a banner and was arrested while another tried to assualt someone and was also arrested. Some of them just seemed a bit lost. One guy grabbed the microphone from an anti racist speaker to shout about Muslim paedophiles but he didn’t last long. A much better speaker was an 11 year old girl who said they should be renamed the Racist Defence League.

Meanwhile the main EDL demo gathered in a bar that didn’t want them, to ‘march’ all of 150 metres to their rally point. Things were considerably calmer than last year when they trashed the area including their own portaloos and fought with police. About 60 were eventually arrested and convicted for that but they hardly did anything this time. At the end they were contained and taken out of the area in minibuses. The turnout for them of about 300 was a lot less than they were hoping for but, of course, from our point of view, 300 too many!

Well done to everyone who turned up and made it happen. Hope you’ve all got dry by now!

UAF-gathering-in-Chamberlain-Square

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