In signs of a backlash after the horrible Woolwich attack, more than 100 angry supporters of the English Defence League, a far-right street protest group, took to the streets, some wearing balaclavas and carrying England's red and white flag.
Do the EDL not realise that by marching through woolwich, they're stopping police from protecting us...? twitter.com/weston_joel/st…— Joel Weston (@weston_joel) May 22, 2013
EDL members gathered near the site where a soldier was hacked to death by Islamic fanatics and threw bottles at police. They had to face a standoff with the police, officers formed a barrier and the men had to leave the immediate area after the brief incident.
Some EDL supporters gathered at The Queen's Arms pub locally, where they sang nationalistic songs.
Tweets from the protest described a serious standoff between the EDL members and law enforcement. Here are few tweets from the protest.
— James Banks (@Tweetingbanksy) May 22, 2013
EDL members took to Facebook after the murder, calling on to stand up to Islam in England.
EDL Leader Tommy Robinson said:"They're chopping our soldiers' heads off. This is Islam. That's what we've seen today. They've cut off one of our Army's heads off on the streets of London. Our next generation are being taught through schools that Islam is a religion of peace. It's not. It never has been. What you saw today is Islam. Everyone's had enough. There has to be a reaction, for the Government to listen, for the police to listen, to understand how angry this British public are."
Two men were also arrested in connection with separate attacks on mosques outside London.A window and bookcases containing the Quran at the Canterbury Street site were smashed just hours after the murder.
A mosque in Kent which was attacked due to the killing in woolwich, I really don't see how this will solve anything twitter.com/DhaalPower/sta…— Van-DhaalPower (@DhaalPower) May 22, 2013
The horrific attack in Woolwich has been universally condemned including by the Muslim Council of Britain: "This is a truly barbaric act that has no basis in Islam and we condemn this unreservedly.”
London was last hit by a serious militant attack in July 2005, when four young Islamists set off suicide bombs on the public transport network, killing 52 people and wounding hundreds. A similar attempted attack 2 weeks later was thwarted.
British counter-terrorism chiefs have recently warned that radicalized individuals, so-called "lone wolves" who might have had no direct contact with al Qaeda, posed as great a risk as those who plotted attacks on the lines of the 2005 bombings.
Britain's involvement in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq in the past decade has often stirred anger among British Muslims and occasionally made soldiers a target at home. British police have foiled at least two major plots in which Islamist suspects were accused of planning to kill off-duty troops.