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TRADE UNIONISTS had vowed to “go into the sewers” to fight Britain’s growing far-right menace over the weekend, as a neonazi rabble took to the streets of Glasgow.
The Scottish Defence League — an offshoot of the Tommy Robinson-founded English Defence League — was vastly outnumbered by anti-fascist demonstrators in the city’s George Square.
Counter-demonstrators chanted: “There are many many more of us than you” and “nazi scum — off our streets.”
The counter-demo included a large contingent from rail union RMT.
A group of the union’s members were violently attacked by Mr Robinson’s thugs in London last weekend.
RMT Scotland organiser Gordon Martin said: “We’re united here against the scum of the earth behind us.
“We need to go into the sewers to fight these people, and into the sewers we will go.
“Refugees are welcome here, the scum behind us aren’t.”
Other organisations represented at the counter demo, which was organised by Unite Against Fascism, included general union Unite and the Young Communist League.
A heavy police presence allowed the SDL to hold its rally in another part of the square. At one point, a small group of anti-fascists confronted the neonazis from a closer proximity, shouting: “What’s that smell? SDL!”
The fascist rabble, of around 40 to 60 demonstrators, were protesting against the imprisonment of former EDL leader Mr Robinson, real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, who was jailed for publishing information that could prejudice an ongoing court case.
He had been streaming a live video in which he confronted defendants in a child sex abuse case outside Leeds Crown Court.
At the anti-fascist rally, SNP MSP Sandra White said the SDL demonstrators should be “arrested” and expressed sympathy for the children present at the fascist demo.
She said that the “People Make Glasgow” banners adorning the square referred to the city’s inclusive nature, and compared this with the divisive and hateful rhetoric of fascists.
“It’s not their people who make Glasgow, it’s ours,” Ms White added.
Cat Mackay, of Perth Against Racism, said: “All victims of child abuse matter, not just those that suit Tommy Robinson.”
She criticised the neonazis for donning face masks to conceal their identities, saying: “I am not afraid to stand up [and demonstrate] without a mask.”
Conrad Landin is Morning Star Scotland editor.
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