Police say there won’t be second EDL protest

ON THE MOVE EDL supporters in Portsmouth last weekend
ON THE MOVE EDL supporters in Portsmouth last weekend
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POLICE say a second EDL march will not take place in Portsmouth at the weekend.

Hampshire Constabulary has responded to comments made by regional organiser of the English Defence League, Mickey Bayliss.

He told The News that a second protest would take place but the whereabouts and time would not be discussed with police or Portsmouth City Council.

But a Hampshire Constabulary spokesman has said that they are in contact with the EDL and have been assured no march is set to take place.

He said: ‘We remain in contact with members of the EDL in Portsmouth.

‘We are confident they will inform and consult us about any plans it may make for marches in the future.

‘We have no confirmed proposals for further marches in the city at this time.

‘Officers have regular discussions with the organisers of public demonstrations to ensure a balance is struck between the rights of people to protest peacefully within the law, and our duty to prevent any disorder affecting local residents and other groups in the community.’

The call for a second protest came after comments made by council leader, Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson, after a march on Saturday.

He said the protest was ‘disrespectful’ and certain actions were ‘absolutely not acceptable’.

But Mickey has said that members of the EDL have the right to protest and the council cannot tell them what they can or cannot do.

He said: ‘We have the freedom to do what we want and we will be holding another march this weekend.

‘The march will be against the Madani Academy and the council.’

The Muslim school is set to open later this year in Buckland.

Members of the EDL and the Unite Against Fascism marched to the academy, at Merefield House, Buckland.

They say the new academy will not allow Muslim children to integrate into society.

The council has said that it will follow the response of the police if a march was to take place.