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Far-right protest outside mosque

Published 03/04/2015

Far-right groups staged a protest outside Central London Mosque
Far-right groups staged a protest outside Central London Mosque

Far-right protesters have clashed with Muslims attending afternoon prayers.

Around 100 members of Britain First and the English Defence League shouted and chanted outside the London Central Mosque and Islamic Cultural Centre as hundreds of men, women and children moved inside for prayers.

Some protesters chanted anti-Islamic messages, while others waved banners and placards.

Around 100 police kept them away from the front of the mosque, although trouble threatened to escalate when a handful of far-right demonstrators surged down the pavement towards a group of Muslims.

The protesters, who said they were antagonised by some of the worshippers, had to be restrained by officers.

Members of the EDL sang "It's our country, we're taking it back" to the tune of the Beach Boys' Sloop John B as prayers were being held, while others simply shouted "Scum".

Radical cleric Anjem Choudary was among those attending worship.

Speaking outside after prayers, Mr Choudary told Muslims not to vote at the forthcoming election.

He also handed out leaflets entitled "why it is strictly forbidden to vote in Islam".

One passage read: "Only God can make things lawful and unlawful. If a human being does this ... this is considered the most heinous crime."

However, he was accused by some worshippers of encouraging anti-Islamic protests

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