Pegida UK supporters stage anti-Islam silent march in Birmingham
The Pegida rally in UK on Saturday took place in a quiet atmosphere despite fears of violence and incidents that however bursted out in twin demonstrations in Calais and Amsterdam, leading to the police firing tear gas and arresting some protesters.
Nonetheless, the low level of demonstrators (only 200) and the gathering taking place in an empty industrial estate in Birmingham – possibly at the request of the police – might have had a decisive influence.
However, the movement’s UK leader, Tommy Robinson, attempts to use this “quiet” manifestation to demonstrate that Pegida is a movement “people can support”.
Thus, he tries to differentiate the anti-Muslims and anti-immigration movement from racists, neo-Nazis, hooligans and violent demonstrators that are, according to him, not welcome.
If this strategy succeeds, it may place Pegida as a legitimate social and political actor concerning the refugees’ crisis and attracts people whose fears on the perpetuation of their European culture have been fanned by such movements.
A tendency that lecturer Paul Kohler could observed by confronting with some of the protesters that were holding placards supporting Trump’s view on Muslim immigration. Many of the participants, claiming not to be racists, defend their fears that Islam isn’t compatible with Europe’s culture.
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"Il devient absolument urgent de mettre un terme à cette injustice. Il y a un manque de connaissances et de recherches. Il faut donc promouvoir le recueil de témoignages, mais aussi construire des mémoriaux, organiser des expositions..." - @BenjaminAbtan