Posted by: Eddie | November 14, 2010

EDL target Portsmouth mosque

Yesterday, around 200 people, among them EDL, angrily protested outside Portsmouth Jami Mosque.

At 12pm, around 50 people turned up to protest against the burning of a poppy during remembrance day by Muslims Against Crusades. The previous day a poppy had been graffitti’d on the mosque but then painted over by council workers.

This was despite their being no connection to Muslims Against Crusades and Portsmouth Jami Mosque. The mosque was even played an active role in supporting Remembrance Day according to Muhammad Muhi Uddin.

He said to the BBC “It deeply hurts me. If they [protesters] talked to us then we would explain where we stand.

“It’s a matter of respecting each other, it’s not a matter of religion. In a society, whether we’re Christian or Muslims, we should respect each other.”

 After the initial protest they then left to watch the Portsmouth match and I assume to rally some more support.

When they came back at 5, their numbers had swelled to 150-200 people though this is hard for me to confirm as the protest only seemed 2 or 3 lines deep as far as I could see.

But after the first protest, around 70 antifascist protestors had assembled, which isn’t a bad turnout considering the short amount of time they had to organise and respond to the situation.

A a shouting match then ensued. The anti-muslim protestors started off by claiming that they weren’t racist but only there out of anger of the poppy burning. Within an hour, the crowd (some of whom were EDL which were bused in) started shouting “Who’s the paki at the back?” at some asian local lads and “You’re not welcome anymore!”. Not racist? I think not.

Every now and then a few members of the anti-muslim protestors would sneak into the crowd defending the mosque and start chanting or arguing with the anti-fascists. One of the highlights being an exchange between one anti-muslim protestor and an anti-fascist. The anti-muslim man accused someone of being a fascist, when the man defending the mosque asked how he was a fascist, his accuser just looked confused and angry.

At one point, one anti-muslim couldn’t control his anger any longer and stormed into the antifascist and attacked a young lad, he was then grabbed by police and protestors alike and received a few blows to the head. Protestors were held back by police and the man was swiftly arrested whilst singing england chants into the pavement. 

Members of the local asian community started to turn up in larger numbers when the crowd started throwing rocks, bottles and fireworks at those defending the mosque.

Some cars that drove past beeped in support of the anti-muslims, some of them were beeping from their work cars, the companies involved were; Aqua Cars, Anglian Home Improvements, Wessex Demolition and the charity, Forces Support. 

The stand-off lasted 3 hours when both sides were moved on by police.

This was a sad day for Portsmouth and showed a willing for local people to attack a mosque without any real grasp of the facts involved.

But many thanks go out to the people who stood their ground whilst outnumbered and being pelted. Unfortunately a woman got hit by a fairly sizeable rock in the stomach from what I could tell at the time, so best wishes go out to her and I hope that it wasn’t a serious injury.

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Responses

  1. Decent report but how exactly does a beeping horn categorise which side the driver supports. You may need to consider apologising to some of these companies or at least rewrite your report

    • Obviously there were beeps for both sides by people driving past but I have only included companies whose drivers cheered or other otherwise showed their support for those targeting the mosque.

    • As a witness i can confirm that the company’s listed were supporting the Nationalist anti Muslim side of the ‘protest’. The Armed forces support charity, or whatever the fuck they are called, were particulary bad, actually stopping in front of the demo and geeing up the crowd to shout louder, when you were standing on the oposite side this ws pretty worrying, fueling the fire of an already volitile situation. I suggest peope contact the charity to register thier complaint. If i see that van again…


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