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Respect mobilises against racist Cologne conference

Monday 7 July 2008

Respect is aiming to send at least 100 activists to join protests against an anti-Islam conference organised by Europe’s fascists. At the recent anti-fascist march in London, it appealed for activists to come to Cologne.

Thanks to George Bush’s war on terror, Islamophobia is the acceptable face of racism. The fascists and far right across Europe have put attacks on Muslims at the centre of their propaganda.

This September the European far right is set to gather in the German city of Cologne for an anti-Muslim hate-fest. Anti-racists, trade unions, survivors of the Holocaust, Muslim groups and others across Germany are calling on people to come to the city in protest. Respect is organising a large delegation to join this major protest, blockade and counter-conference over the weekend of 20 and 21 September.

Nadir Ahmed, one of the organisers of the delegation, says, “The BNP’s Richard Barnbrook is due to be in Cologne alongside veteran fascists like Jean Marie Le Pen.

“Every far right party wants to get a boost from it. A huge counter protest, on the other hand, will lift Muslims and anti-racists across the continent. The fascists appear to have chosen this date because it is right in the middle of Ramadan, when Muslims are fasting, tend not to travel far, and spend a lot of time with friends and family.

“Well, for me and many Muslims going to Cologne to stop this Nuremberg rally for Islamophobia definitely comes under the category of essential travel and an obligation to act justly. I hope many brothers and sisters, Muslim and non-Muslim, join us.”

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