A right-wing group, which claims to protest against militant Islam, is planning a Lincoln demonstration this summer, The Linc can reveal.
The English Defence League (EDL) wants to protest against plans to build a mosque in Boultham Park Road. The mosque was originally rejected by City of Lincoln Council on the grounds that it would cause traffic problems, but an appeal against the decision has been launched.
At previous EDL demonstrations there have been violent clashes between the EDL, police, and anti-fascist protesters. The EDL has also faced criticism for racist chanting at its demos.
A spokesman for the EDL’s Lincoln Division says: “We will be protesting against the building of the mosque in Lincoln and using it as a platform to say no to all mosques in England. You may say that this is against all Muslims [by] saying no more mosques, but it’s not.
“The reason we don’t want mosques in our country is because many of them are funded by an..extremist group, Tablighi Jamaat, which means that they will have a say in what is taught in these mosques.”
However, when asked if this is how the EDL think Lincoln’s mosque would be funded, they said: “I do not think…the Lincoln mosque will be funded by radicals.”
They also insist that the EDL isn’t racist because “there is [sic] muslim members within the EDL…Do you think they would be supporting us if they felt we was [sic] racist or islamaphobic?”.
One member of Lincoln EDL’s Facebook group, writing under the name “Jem England Cook”, said: “Great that all the houses will be worth 50% less around Boultham if these rag heads get their way. Wasn’t it an old chapel they was [sic] turning into a paedo palace? Sums up this fucked up country when they are taking over our religious places. Keep them out of Lincoln full stop.”
Mike Smith, who runs the Casuals United blog and recruits people for the English Defence League, told The Linc: “We can’t help the idiots and Nazis who regularly attach themselves to us on Facebook, which is riddled with losers and no hopers. We only use Facebook to recruit, we take no responsibility for any numpties on there.”
The EDL claims that residents do not want a mosque built in Lincoln and that locals regularly contact the group to say so.
Kieran English, chief inspector of Lincolnshire Police, says: “We have not been approached by representatives of the EDL about these proposals. Should any organisation wish to conduct a demonstration in Lincoln, we will discuss their requests with them.”
The Islamic Association of Lincoln did not respond to The Linc‘s request for comment.Tweet