Calls from UK far-right to counter pro-Palestine march in London
Far-right groups are organising counter-protests against the planned pro-Palestinian demonstration in London on Saturday.
Prominent far-right figures have encouraged their supporters to show up in opposition to the rally, according to reports by UK media outlets as well as social media posts and closed chat forums.
Organisers of the pro-Palestinian rally have said that over 500,000 demonstrators are expected to turn out in London to call for a ceasefire in Gaza, where Israel's indiscriminate war has killed more than 11,000 people.
The British police identified far-right groups and football hooligans as the main risk of public disorder on Armistice Day - when Britain honours those killed in World War One - after concerns were raised over the pro-Palestinian demonstration.
"Parts of the far right are trying to mobilise against the pro-Palestinian demonstration taking place this weekend around central London," said Nick Lowles, chief executive of the Hope Not Hate anti-extremism group.
"However, these are by no means united efforts across the groups intending to head to London on Saturday.
"What remains to be seen is whether these groups have the power to mobilise in the way that they could several years ago."
The Guardian newspaper said there was not much to suggest appeals by those on the far right would lead to a "significant number of their supporters coming out to cause trouble".
The news website i reported it saw messages in one anti-Islamic WhatsApp group containing more than 1,000 members, which called on people to "fight back" against pro-Palestinian protesters, with one adding: "No surrender to these c***s, this is our House."
Members from as far afield as Scotland vowed to travel to London with others claiming to be on high alert for pro-Palestinian demonstrations in Middlesbrough.
A voice note of English Defence League (EDL) founder Tommy Robinson was also shared in the group.
Despite calls for a ban on Saturday's pro-Palestinian march, Mark Rowley, the commissioner of London's Metropolitan Police, said on Tuesday that "intelligence surrounding the potential for serious disorder this weekend does not meet the threshold" to apply for one.
Hundreds of thousands are expected to attend to call for a ceasefire in Gaza, where Israel's relentless military campaign has killed over 11,000 Palestinians - mostly children and women.