Anti-Semitism in the UK: Neo-Nazis planning anti-Jewish protest in Golders Green
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A far right group is planning a rally in the heartland of the London Jewish community against what it calls "Jewification of Britain".
And the Home Office and Metropolitan Police can do nothing to stop the 4 July protest from happening.
A spokesperson for the Community Security Trust (CST), which monitors anti-Semitism in Britain and liaises with the police on the issue, said it was aware of the proposed demonstration.
The protest, believed to be organised by neo-Nazi blogger Joshua Bonehill-Paine, follows a similar demonstration in Stamford Hill, north London, the home of the capital's ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, and the largest of its kind in Europe.
In an "appeal against the Jewification of Britain", Bonehill-Pain said there was an an "occupation force of approximately 50,000 Jews" in the area.
Anti-immigrant group New Dawn tweeted: "Oppose the 'Shomrim' demo. Golders Green. Saturday July 4th Details to follow." The "Shomrim" is a Jewish volunteer group that works, with Met co-operation, to protect community buildings and members.
Community leaders and the local Conservative MP, Mike Freer, have called on the Home Office to ban the rally, which is due to take place on a Saturday, the Jewish day of rest, when most Jews will be walking to the synagogue.
A Met spokesman said police had no powers to ban a static demonstration and must safeguard the right to protest, but chief superintendent Adrian Usher, of Barnet Police, said a policing plan was being drawn up.
He said: "Officers are speaking to the organiser of the protest to understand what their plans are."
Freer said: "The rally is not about free speech but a deliberate attempt to provoke tension and anti-Semitism."
Jewish community groups have also called for the rally to be banned, and more than 3,000 people have signed a Change.org petition calling for it to be halted.
The petition says: "A neo-Nazi rally or march in this area is intended to be inflammatory and threatening. It is racist in nature and has no place on modern Britain.
"The Jewish residents of Golders Green should not be subject to this racist abuse."
CST spokesman Mark Gardner said: "[We are] fully aware of this explicitly anti-Semitic demonstration, and have discussed it in recent weeks with police and government.
"It follows a similar demonstration in Stamford Hill that was quite pathetic and was largely ignored, but we are fully aware of the possible impact of such an event in Golders Green and are planning accordingly."
However, he added: "Jews now face two choices for 4 July. They can ignore the neo-Nazis, as in Stamford Hill, or they can protest. Whichever choice each individual takes, we hope that they will do so out of a feeling of pride and strength, rather than fear and intimidation."
The Board of Deputies of British Jews - the 280,00-strong community's umbrella body - vehemently condemned the "offensive and unacceptable plan" for the protest and said it supports the community's right to counter-protest.
A spokesman said: "The Board has made firm representations to the home secretary and the Metropolitan Police and look to them to prevent it happening or to move its location within the limits of the law."
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