The Muslim community turned on extremists in their midst yesterday, telling them they were “sick and tired” of their behaviour.
The angry confrontation came in Luton, where anti-Islamist protesters brandished England flags last Sunday, before clashing with police.
Passing traffic ground to a halt as the large group of moderates confronted about a dozen extremists. As the radical Muslims began to set up their stall, they were surrounded by a crowd shouting “we don’t want you here” and “move on, move on”.
Farasat Latif, of the Islamic Centre in Luton, which was firebombed after the protest against the soldiers, said moderate members of his community took action because police had failed to move the group on.
During the protest against the homecoming parade of the Royal Anglian regiment in March, the extremists had shouted “baby killers” and “butchers of Basra” as well as brandishing placards against the Iraq war.
He said the extremists, who follow the militant group led by Sheikh Omar Bakri Muhammed, had fuelled feelings against the Muslim community which led to a march last Sunday in Luton which was disrupted by white, right-wing extremists. Mr Latif said:
“They represent nobody but themselves. The community decided to move them on because the police won’t. We have asked them, but they did nothing. We have been the victims twice over – from the stupidity of Muslim extremists who metaphorically pour petrol and fan the flames of the right-wing extremists. This was a peaceful demonstration and we hope they get the message that the law-abiding community is sick and tired of them.”
See also “Unmasked: The football hooligans behind last weekend’s bloody protest against a Muslim war demo”, Daily Mail, 31 May 2009.
You’ll note, by the way, that the Mail can’t manage to report the demonstration against the Al-Muhajiroun extremists without reference to “scenes of violence”.
Update: Read the Islamic Center statement “Our action against the neo-Khawaarij: al-Muhaajiroon” here.