A petition to the Home Secretary urging her to ban a proposed neo-Nazi rally in Golders Green has reached 10,000 signatures.
Neo-Nazi and far right anti-Semitic groups are planning the demonstration for the first Shabbat in July, which the police said they are powerless to stop, legally, as it is a static demonstration.
Among those thought to be involved in organising the rally – is right-wing group New Dawn.
Pro-Israel advocacy group – North West Friends of Israel – launched the petition one week ago.
It asks ‘the Home Office to ban the planned Neo Nazi Rally in Golders Green, London.’
The petition page says: “A neo-Nazi rally or march in this area is intended to be inflammatory and threatening. It is racist in nature and has no place on modern Britain.
“The Jewish residents of Golders Green should not be subject to this racist abuse.”
If you want to sign the petition, you can view it here: Ban the planned Neo Nazi Rally on July 4, 2015 in Golders Green, London
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson told Jewish News: ‘The Jewish community is part of London’s history and makes a massive contribution to our city’s success. Jewish Londoners should have the right to live their lives and go about their daily business without fear of confrontation, particularly on Shabbat, which seems deliberately provocative.
He continued, saying “I support the right to peaceful protest, but anti-Semitism has no place in a city like London. We will continue to liaise with the community, as well as the police, who will respond appropriately to any disorder, crime and incitement to hatred wherever it occurs.’
Mark Gardner of the Community Security Trust (CST) said the they were “fully aware of this explicitly anti-Semitic demonstration,” and were in discussions with both police and government about the next steps. He said: “We sincerely hope that our Jewish community will not be cowed by this neo-Nazi intimidation”.
Local MP Mike Freer told Jewish News: “I have called on the Home Office to step in and ban this demonstration. This rally is not about free speech but a deliberate attempt to promote tension and anti-Semitism.”
A spokesman for anti-fascist group Hope Not Hate said it was strongly opposed to the rally going ahead but wanted the community to be both prepared and informed. What is additionally troubling community leaders is the possibility of secular Jewish groups staging a counter-protest – and any resulting violence.
Chief Superintendent Adrian Usher, head of policing in Barnet, said: “Officers will continue to work closely with the local community to make sure we fully understand their concerns and to brief them on the policing operation as it develops”. He said officers were speaking to the organisers of the rally “to understand what their plans are”.