Unite to Stop The BNP - assemble outside the Art Gallery, The Headrow Saturday 13 June at 11 am
Yorkshire & Humber Unite Against Fascism will be holding a protest on Saturday June 13 outside The Art Gallery, The Headrow at 11 am.
Last night saw the fascist British National Party (BNP) gain its first two seats in the European parliament. BNP candidate Andrew Brons, a former stalwart of the National Front and a lifelong Nazi, narrowly took the final MEP place in the Yorkshire & the Humber region. The fascists polled 120,139 votes, representing 9.8% of the vote as compared to 8.0% in 2004.
BNP leader Nick Griffin took the final MEP place in North West England in the early hours of today. Griffin, who has a criminal conviction for incitement to racial hatred, polled 132,094 across the region, or 8.0% of the vote as compared to 6.4% in 2004.
John Campbell, Chair, Yorkshire & the Humber Unite Against Fascism said: "This is a major turning point in British politics. This breakthrough by the BNP threatens to normalise the presence of a fascist party on the British political scene in a similar manner to Jean-Marie Le Pen's Front National in France. We cannot allow this to happen. Yorkshire & Humber Unite Against Fascism is committed to mobilising the largest possible mass movement across every walk of life to stop the fascist BNP and drive them out of the political mainstream - linking all democrats, trade unions, minority communities and the great majority of society against racism and fascism."
Abdul Gooljar, Islamic Society of Britain said: “The BNP are 21st century Nazis who threaten all our democratic freedoms. They try to take advantage of people's anxieties in an economic crisis to scapegoat minorities. We will not allow them to divide the people of Yorkshire.”
Dan Cohen, President Beth Hamidrash Hagadol Synagogue in Leeds said: “A British National Party MEP is a disaster and a tragedy for Yorkshire. A disaster as the BNP has nothing to offer other than its outdated message of intolerance and hate. A tragedy as we have just commemorated 65 years since the D-Day landings, where our grandparents literally risked and in some cases gave up their lives to fight against fascism. The BNP may wear a mask of respectability, but they are no different to any those we fought 65 years ago."
Bill Adams TUC Regional Secretary said, “a day of shame for democracy in Yorkshire and the Humber. Over the very weekend we have celebrated the start of the defeat of Fascism on D-Day 1944, the electorate return to the European Parliament an admirer of Adolf Hitler to represent us in Europe. We must continue to campaign against the fascists who seek to divide our communities, spread hate and fear with racist policies, and who are committed anti Europeans. Their success comes from people not voting in the election, not from some mandate they claim to have across the region”
Fiona Edwards, Woman’s Officer, Sheffield University Students’ Union said: “We must all rededicate ourselves to uniting all those who reject the fascist BNP’s poisonous messages. We will not allow the BNP to abuse democracy in order to destroy it.”
Leeds UAF urges all those who oppose racism and fascism to join us on Saturday 13 June at 11am to show the majority of the people of Yorkshire will not allow the fascist BNP to spread their racist lies.