This sign appeared outside The Crofts pub in Roath, Cardiff.
This sign appeared outside The Crofts pub in Roath, Cardiff.
No further action has been taken by Ukip against one of its Welsh parliamentary candidates who condemned diversity and the notion of a multicultural society.
In October the party said that Martyn Ford, who will stand in Swansea West at next May’s general election, would be reported to its national executive committee. But now Ukip says there was no need to do that because he had already been given a “final warning” before we raised the contents of a leaflet distributed in the constituency.
The leaflet stated: “Islamic terror. Abuse of our children. The consequence of multiculturalism.” It went on to quote critical remarks made by Mr Ford about Muslims, immigration and the “political elite”.
Members of far-right party the National Front tried to disrupt a peaceful march of more than 500 Muslims from across Wales in Newport today.
The annual march, organised by the Islamic Society of Wales, commemorates the anniversary of Prophet Mohammad’s grandson, Imam Hussain, who was martyred more than 1,300 years ago.
The 32nd march to be held in Newport should have taken place last Sunday – the 10th day in the Muslim calendar – but was put back so the city’s Muslims could join in the Remembrance Sunday services.
But yesterday afternoon police stepped in when anti-Muslim protestors attempted to disrupt the peaceful march. As the hundreds of men, women and children walked along Commercial Street, two men carrying National Front flags attempted to enter the crowd from a side street.
They were joined by six more protestors who held up British and Welsh flags and shouted abuse including, “These are our streets” and “Muslims, burn in hell”.
Officers from Gwent Police and private security firms formed a barrier around the men. Two of the men were later seen in the Red Lion pub on Stow Hill, shouting abuse from inside while police blocked the entrance.
Police officers have lined the streets of Cardiff city centre, where a demonstration by a group called the Welsh Alliance is taking place. Anti-fascist protesters have gathered in the city centre in protest of the march, which is set to end at City Hall this afternoon.
Beforehand, members of the Welsh Alliance gathered at pubs near the city’s Mill Lane and bottom of St Mary Street, where they were advised by on their Facebook group: “no banners, flags or chanting inside please”.
Members were told to gather in front of Cardiff Central Station before marching to City Hall for speeches. The Facebook group advised “please leave any racist banners at home”. The group claim on Facebook they are “Welsh patriots” who are “fighting mass immigration”.
Anti-fascism protesters gathered at the bottom of St Mary Street with their own banners to counter the demonstration in “a united front” to show “racism in any guise in not accepted in Cardiff”.
One campaigner opposing the Welsh Alliance was Mia Hollsing, 26, from Mountain Ash. She said: “I think there’s a lot of police here, a bit too many in my view.
“We need a diverse society where everyone is welcome regardless of where they are from and what they believe in. It the rich people that are causing the problems in this country, not ordinary workers, wherever they come from. We are here peacefully – none of us are violent.
“We are chanting and making our voices heard, but that is our right. We don’t want to see any violence here today, that’s not what we are here for, but that doesn’t mean we are willing to let racism go unchallenged.”
A mother flying a black flag outside her family home in a quiet suburban street has told her neighbours: “We are not supporting Islamic State.”
Shazia Ramzan, 35, shocked her neighbours when she raised what looked like the black flag of jihad in her street. Passers-by threatened to call the police after Prime Minister David Cameron said anyone seen with the Shahada flag should be arrested.
But mum-of-two Shazia said it was not the same banner used by the terrorist organisation – and she branded IS as “scumbags”.
She said: “We did not want to cause any grief by putting the flag up. But I’m scared that our house will be bricked. Islamic State are scumbags. Islam does not say what they proclaim; Islam is beautiful and a true religion when followed correctly. They are not Muslims. True Islam does not say anything Islamic State does.”
Muslim communities across Newport are being urged to report hate crimes, with a focus on incidents targeting religion and faith.
Gwent’s Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Paul Harris and Gwent Police Superintendent Mark Warrender met Muslim community leaders yesterday during hate crime awareness week.
A recent hate crime survey in Wales found 15 per cent of religious hate victims had attempted to conceal their religion to reduce the risk of victimisation.
And Superintendent Warrender, the force’s lead officer for hate crime, said of 250 hate crime incidents reported in Gwent every year, just a handful are linked to religion and faith. “The numbers don’t reflect what is going on. We are trying to get more people to come forward and there are lots of different reasons why they don’t,” he said.
“Victims can think the things happening to them do not seem that important and the police have better things to do. Some don’t think the police will do anything, or they are scared to report it. But crimes like these can have a disproportionate effect on victims, and Gwent Police absolutely will not tolerate hate crime.”
A Ukip parliamentary candidate who distributed a leaflet condemning diversity and the notion of a multicultural society is to be disciplined by the party.
But Martyn Ford has not been suspended as the candidate for Swansea West and his case is unlikely to be considered before late next month.
The leaflet states: “Islamic terror. Abuse of our children. The consequence of multiculturalism.” It goes on to quote critical remarks made by Mr Ford about Muslims, immigration and the “political elite”.
A Ukip spokesman said: “This flyer was submitted for approval by the party, but it was deemed inappropriate. It was distributed nonetheless. We will be taking the appropriate action.”
It is understood that Mr Ford will be reported to Ukip’s national executive under the party’s disciplinary process, but that is not likely to be until late November.
A Cardiff mosque has been forced to close after being smashed up by intruders. Police are investigating after the Rabbaniah Islamic Cultural Centre suffered thousands of pounds of damage after burglars pulled down the ceiling and ripped charity boxes from the walls.
The cultural centre in Grangetown was completely wrecked by the intruders who stole at least £4,000 of money stored in charity collection boxes and locked safes containing wages for staff.
The burglars first broke into the main hall but then rampaged through the mosque and cultural centre – tearing down the internal roof to get up to the office on the first floor. Computers were stamped on, CCTV cameras were pulled from the walls and doors have been kicked through.
Complaints have been made after a Torfaen councillor used the term “muzzy” in a post on Facebook – but he denies the comment was an anti-Muslim slur.
Torfaen independent councillor Mike Harris, the chairman of safer communities overview and scrutiny, posted “Once a Muzzy!” on Facebook alongside a Daily Mail article on Hamas reportedly executing 11 Israeli informers. This was quickly picked up by Hope Not Hate campaigners who posted it on their blog and Facebook page.
One person responded that Cllr Harris should step down, while another says that they made a complaint to Torfaen Council. But Cllr Harris has defended his post saying “it is not racist”.
He denies that it was intended as a racist slur but that he was using the word in its proper meaning as set out in the dictionary, “Unable to think clearly; confused”.
While referring to the picture accompanying the article, which shows the executioners carrying guns, he said: “They are executing people so they must be confused and not able to think clearly or muzzy as it says in the dictionary.”
A man entered a shop and told its Muslim owner “I’m a racist and I kill Muslims,” on the first anniversary of the death of soldier Lee Rigby.
Daniel Lee Lewis, of Church Street, Wrexham, entered the shop on Chester Street in Flint after midnight on May 23. He asked the owner where he was from and if he was a Muslim. The owner replied he was Turkish but had an English passport and told Lewis he was Muslim.
Lewis told the owner: “It’s alright, I won’t cause any trouble. It’s my country, I will do what I want. I’m a racist and I kill Muslims.” He spat on the shop floor and invited the owner outside for a fight. But the police had been called and he was arrested.
The 32-year-old told police: “It’s one year today to the death of Lee Rigby, there will be thousands of us in Manchester on Saturday,” before chanting EDL [English Defence League] at them.
Appearing at Wrexham Magistrates Court yesterday, Lewis pleaded guilty to using threatening or abusive words or behaviour with intent to cause racially aggravated fear of or provoke unlawful violence. He also admitted failure to surrender to bail.