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AROUND 600 protesters gathered in Leeds city centre on 13 June to protest the election of BNP MEPs. Speakers, including representatives from the trade union movement, condemned the BNP and some also condemned the current economic situation, including rising unemployment and the social housing shortage that has provided fertile ground for the BNP’s rise.

Ian Pattison, Leeds Socialist Party

Andrew Brons, the elected MEP in Yorkshire and the supposed ‘respectable’ face of the BNP, was a member of the British National Socialist Movement (Nazis) in the 1960s and National Front in the 1980s.

Last Saturday’s demo shows workers and youth don’t want to be represented by fascists. The BNP stands against the trade union movement and for division.

The anger of the protest poured over into an unofficial march through Leeds city centre. Although the BNP did not dare hold a counter-demo, two people were arrested on suspicion of inciting racial hatred on Saturday, but only charged with disorder and given £80 fines.