UK PEGIDA rally becomes violent
Protesters censuring anti-Islam demonstrations by PEGIDA UK have engaged in scuffles with police in central London.
Clashes broke out after a group of masked demonstrators tried to confront the rally by PEGIDA UK supporters.
The protesters were chanting slogans against the anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant group, saying PEGIDA has got to go.
Police tried to contain the crowd. PEGIDA UK is an offshoot of the German movement that has held rallies in German cities since October 2014.
The group’s title stands for Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West.
PEGIDA’s rallies have been met with counter-demonstrations in Germany and many other European countries.
Now, Massoud Shadjareh, head of the London-based Islamic Human Rights commission, says: “We all now know that Islamophobia in the West is no longer… as a result of extreme right or extremism within the European or Western societies. Now, we know very clearly that [Islamophobia] is institutionalized and structuralized and is being promoted by politicians, media, and people from all sort of different background.”
File photo of an anti-Islam rally in the UK
Shadjareh told Press TV’s UK Desk on Sunday that “the policies that are being promoted are specifically targeting Muslims. Muslims are being seen as sort of members of possible terrorist organization. Criminalization is being implemented in the Muslim community and the Muslim community is being seen as others and not an equal partner within the society.
“This is a reality that is unleashing then the extremists to come out and actually promote hatred and this is why we are seeing on the streets of Europe these large numbers of people coming unleashing the pure hatred in a way that they will never be able to do against any other community either the Jewish community or black community.”
He said: “The British government, far from trying to do anything to contain or combat this sort of behavior, it has actually fueled and legitimized it [Islamophobia] by their Islamophobic policies and exclusion of the Muslims from community.”
He also referred to the UK May 7 general election and noted: “Britain is going through the election and the British government is using Islamophobia card because they know more and more members of the [Muslim] community are members of the society. So, they could play this Islamophobia card to get popularity. It’s very dangerous. We are going through the same experiences that we went through at the time of Nazi and this is very worrying.”