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The Violence of the West Midlands Police against the EDL in Coventry

Coventry tunnel after the EDL demo

Coventry tunnel after the EDL demo

The West Midlands Police win the award for crass, unprovoked, heavy-handed, disrespect and especially violent actions against the English Defence League during our demonstration in Coventry on 21 May 2016.

The lead-up to the WMP baton wielding after our demonstration

All seemed to go well until it was time to leave the area of our demonstration. Then, as if being directed from on high, we were marched around town and down through subways in a meandering route that even had locals confused. Our numbers included many women (as usual), but also boys and girls.

It was astonishing to all that the WMP could not organise the return to our coaches and train station without the fuss and violence. Had they totally omitted to plan for protection after our speeches? Were the officers on the ground left to make it up as they went along? If the police had good reason to change our route, surely they would have informed our stewards. At several points on the return journey in the subways we were squeezed together and then were stopped inside the tunnel by the police. But a crowd in the back cannot easily be stopped just because the few in the front are stopped. In one tunnel the line of police blocked our way, raising their batons ready to strike. The image from the back of the moving queue in a dark tunnel, of the silhouette of police officers against the sunshine at the opposite end of the tunnel with batons raised, was frightening. One of our members, a woman, was hit on the head and concussed. As pictures show, several more of our members were hit.

The EDL did nothing to provoke such reaction/action by the police. The police were ready for violence and engineered a reaction from us to justify their own use of violence. They had riot helmets and batons hanging from their belts.

After the police batons

At one point approaching the railway station German shepherd dogs, barking angrily, were held back by police. Just outside the station the police held us back because, we were told, Lefties were inside waiting for us. So the police can control hundreds of non-violent and cooperative patriots but not clear the station of a few Lefties? It was the police’s choice to ignore and not disperse the Lefties who, presumably, the police feared were poised to, literally, “Smash the EDL”.

Our record

This sort of bullying provocation by the WMP is not new to our experience of demonstrations. Many police forces of course have worked well with us and provided a sensible, cooperative and respectful working relationship which we always try to foster. In fact, an excellent example of professional cooperation that enabled us to demonstrate in our own way was in Walsall last year. And that was WMP! What happened? Don’t they talk to each other?

The job of the police is to protect the right and passage of peaceful, lawful protests. Threatening protesters with raised batons as they were emerging un-threateningly from the crush of a confined tunnel is not the way to go about it.

We demand an explanation and an apology

How did this happen? As law abiding citizens we demand an explanation for this chaos and intimidation directed toward peaceful protestors. An explanation and – if justified – an apology. But we know that we will not be heard – not without other voices speaking up as well. Therefore, we call on the Coventry media, who have covered this event extensively, to ask relevant questions of their local constabulary and demand answers.

The evasiveness of the Coventry 91

In the Coventry media before our 21 May demonstration a letter was published with 91 signatories declaring that our protest against the Islamification of British society, Muslim grooming/child abuse gangs, local radicalisation for Islamic terrorism, misogynistic sharia law and other evils was not in their name.

The English Defence League is a living beacon of plain speaking about these almost unspeakable topics. It is not an easy role. Fortunately we can depend on the freedoms for peaceful protest that are among the bedrock of British values.

In our exercise of these freedoms we cooperate with the police to arrange our protests to avoid violence, cause minimal disruption, and respect for the law. But in Coventry that understanding was broken by police violence.

Will the Coventry 91 speak up now about the rights of EDL and others to protest peacefully?

If the people of Coventry do not speak up for the right of peaceful protest, who will the WMP target next for intimidation and harassment?

WMP’s baton assault in Coventry will not deter us

In this instance it was only the discipline of the EDL, not the police, which prevented an escalation of violence. Our efforts to convey our message about the threats from Islamification to the wider public will not be deterred by state-sanctioned violence and provocation; nor by weaselly threats from the likes of the UAF; nor by so-called leaders who are wilfully blind to the threat of Islam and refuse to support democratic processes.

Our willingness to organise demonstrations in cooperation and discussion with the police forces throughout the country is dependent on good faith being shown on both sides. We have always done our part. But if this cooperation and discussion is to be followed by unprovoked and surprise baton wielding, it is no more than a charade. Why should we bother with it? If the police and local leaders abdicate their role as guardians of civil and political rights we will rely on ourselves alone in order to protect our families, communities and this great nation.

Alan Spence
Chairman
English Defence League Committee
31 May 2016

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10 Comments

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  1. Abusive behavior from an authority which suposed to protect the public instead I see the opposite an apology should be given in this case

  2. The police need to realise they are supposed to protect their citizens not beat them up. We see it everyday with the past being brought up regarding dodgy police. From the miners strike to Hillsborough.

    There is only one thing for it. The police have their speed cameras. In this day and age no one can be untouchable. In any demonstration cameras are needed. If we are to protest and if we have to be believed then lets strategically record everything.

    If the police then put a foot wrong. They are no longer police and rightly so.

    1. protect their citizens. try living on your own a white women 52 battling breast cancer . grade 3 invasive. 16 weeks 6 doses chemo 23 doses radio. and Muslim neighbours from hell. every night the noise skype Asian noise. from 1am until 3. noise all evening. her shouting. the area is now like a trailer park trash site. Rubbish thrown in my garden in another house in the hedge, the spitting makes my stomach churn. Things were so bad I called the police the WPC who called said. well its what they do. this is England not bloody Pakistan. she then said I was racist and did not want them as neighbours. to bloody right
      stick to giving out tickets.

  3. In a peaceful demonstration where you mean no harm you are entitled to film whatever you want. If batons are bought to a peaceful protest that is a sign of aggression. Any law abiding citizen would be arrested on the spot if they walked around with a baseball bat. It’s time to get clever people. Record everything and show nothing.

  4. I want every law abiding, Koran believer to have an “ISIS/Terrorism not in my name” sticker in their window. I also do another line which says “I love Islam not little white girls around 12”
    I also have a premium line which says “I love Islam but there’s so much money to be made from drugs that I won’t eat bacon and we’ll call it quits”

    1. But muslims will happily lie to deceive non muslims.

      Muslims know all the examples of isis doing evil are merely copying muhamads actions and teachings as per quran, hadith, sira.

  5. What else is new .. Betcha’ a goat these coppers received
    extra pay to keep an eye on the ferocious EDL ..
    Like some others in the past, did the lad that was struck,
    go to jail ??

    1. Yes mate just like the miners strikes
      looks like they will never get justice now
      another white wash

  6. ORGANIZED CRIME GETS IT’S TALONS INTO EVERY AREA OF SOCIETY
    I suggest you start taking names and badges of officers for there are Organized Criminal Police Officers afoot …you need proof to catch them!
    (they get coerced into the gangs by their families being threatened)
    In Canada Organized Crime is working WITH THE MUSLIMS!…. if you can believe this!!! Jewish Organized Crime, IRA, Filipinos, Free Masons, TRIADS, Yakuza, MAFIA (Italian and Portuguese)…unbelievable!..but true.

  7. protect and serve.. really for nearly 2 years now my Muslim neighbour’s have made my life hell. I would not pay for their fence on a property they rent. disgusting people. even after months of chemo they still banged on the wall every night. I asked the police to come to the house. and hear what I endure every night. not a chance. help a white women. in my dreams
    the abuse not interested. rubbish thrown on my patio, pots stolen solar lights, pegs. prove it. not interested at all. radio therapy every day in june. I was suicidal, an officer said I was racist. the police did nothing
    then my neighbours said I hade made racist comments to them
    the police raced to my house. I had just had another dose of chemo.i asked when I said this. quote they did not know what day it was or which week of what month. I just laughed.
    officers I suggest you stick to your fast cars and harass the motorists as its all you can do. no tax or insurance. there’s ya ticket job done.

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