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2019 European Parliament election Far right parties in the United Kingdom

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Zur Situation in Großbritannien vor der EU-Wahl. (Quelle: Pixabay)

The European Union elects a new parliament on May 26. We talked with European journalists and NGOs from different European countries to get a picture of the European right wing. We asked them how their local right wing parties want to change the European Union and which marginalized group is hated the most.

Our questions were answered by Joe Mulhall from „Hope not Hate“, an human rights NGO that uses research, education and public engagement to challenge mistrust and racism, and helps to build communities that are inclusive, celebrate shared identities and are resilient to hate.

 

What right-wing parties are active in your country/participating in the European elections?

Stephen Yaxley Lennon (aka Tommy Robinson) 

1) Lennon is standing as an independent in the North West region of the UK.*

Here is a blog about Lennon with general details: https://www.hopenothate.org.uk/research/investigations/tommy-robinson-far-right-islamophobic-extremist/

Here is a fact website „Hope not Hate“ produced on him: http://tommyrobinsonfacts.com/

“Tommy Robinson – real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon – is a convicted fraudster and a serial thug. He has made a career out of causing trouble and division. He has a long history of making racist statements and has been jailed multiple times for the crimes he has committed. He doesn’t want to stand up for anyone but himself and wherever he goes, trouble is rarely far behind.” Nick Lowles, HOPE not hate CEO

What are they campaigning for/what is their political agenda?

2) His main campaign points will be Brexit (betrayal); so-called ‘Muslim Grooming Gangs’; anti-elite populism.

What is their main topic for the European elections?

3) Same as 2.

What marginalised groups does their campaign oppose the most? (i.e. refugees, muslims, immigrants, jews, gender equality, Sinti and Roma, LGBTQI)

4) His main target is Muslims.

How do they propose to change the EU?

5) He wants to leave the EU.

How good do you think their chances are in the elections?

6) He has a chance of winning. He will need roughly 8-9% in the election, and if there’s a really low turnout which is a possibility his chances are significantly higher. He has been doing regular events around the North West.

 

UKIP 

1) The UK Independence Party (UKIP) is an EU-skeptical and right-wing to far-right British party whose main objective is the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union („Brexit“). Under the chair Gerard Batten, the party has moved more to the right since 2018 and is increasingly anti-Islamic and racist.

What are they campaigning for/what is their political agenda?

2) Brexit, ‘Free Speech’, anti-immigration

What is their main topic for the European elections?

3) Brexit

What marginalised groups does their campaign oppose the most? (i.e. refugees, muslims, immigrants, jews, gender equality, Sinti and Roma, LGBTQI)

4) Muslims, immigrants

How do they propose to change the EU?

5) They propose to leave it

How good do you think their chances are in the elections?

6) They have collapsed in the polls and will likely be wiped out by The Brexit Party (Farage). They might even win zero seats this time around. Maybe one in the South East of England. They have also suffered due to the coverage of Carl Benjamin AKA ‘Sargon of Akkad’, a vlogger who is running as a UKIP candidate and who has been in the spotlight for various extreme comments he has made.

More details:

The last time the UK participated in the EU elections in 2014 was the breakthrough year for UKIP, which, under then-leader Nigel Farage, won the elections with 27.5% of the vote and 23 MEPs, a victory that arguably forced then-Prime Minister David Cameron to hold the referendum in the first place. However, the party is much diminished since the referendum. Just three of the party’s MEPs remain, one of whom is the party leader Gerard Batten, the majority of others having defected to Farage’s newly formed Brexit Party, as UKIP has plunged into ever more extreme territory over the past year. They have collapsed in the polls and could well win zero seats this time around

Candidates to watch:

As formerly prominent figures have haemorrhaged out of UKIP, Batten has doubled down on his far-right stances, and the increasing radicalisation of the party is evident in the slate of candidates standing in May. Most controversial is Carl Benjamin (AKA Sargon of Akkad), the second billed candidate in the South West. Benjamin has been slammed in the press for telling MP Jess Philips “I wouldn’t even rape you” on Twitter, and has referred to his opponents as “n***ers” in an online outburst last year. Also standing for the party, fourth billed in Scotland, is Mark Meechan (AKA Count Dankula), an online “comedian” convicted last year for teaching his girlfriend’s pug to perform a nazi salute when hearing the commands “Sieg heil” and “gas the Jews”.

More on Carl Benjamin here: https://www.hopenothate.org.uk/2019/04/25/ukip-euro-candidates-vile-racial-slur-ridden-rant/

Stuart Agnew MEP, exposed by HOPE not hate to have recently spoken at an event by a far-right pro-Apartheid group, has top billing in the Eastern region, and Alan Craig, a notorious homophobe, is also representing the party in the North West (albeit in eight place). Craig’s appointment to the position of UKIP’s current Families and Children spokesman in 2018 prompted LGBT officials to resign due to his notoriously homophobic track record, including referring to the LGBT lobby as the “Gaystapo”. Craig dropped out of a “Transformation Potential” event for people trying to cure “unwanted same-sex attraction” after PinkNews revealed that he was due to speak.

 

The Brexit Party

This is a complex one as they are not really a far-right party. It has been formed by Nigel Farage, formerly of UKIP, but the party includes former Conservatives. At this stage they are a single issue party that only focus on Brexit. They have constantly attacked UKIP for being racist. They will do very well in the elections and could well win the most seats.

 

Other Far Right Parties: 

  • The British National Party is standing no candidates.
  • The For Britain Movement is standing no candidates.
  • The English Democrats are standing 10 candidates but have zero chance of being elected.
  • The National Front are standing no candidates.

* Addition BTN:  In Germany, Tommy Robinson is mostly known as leader of the „English Defence League (EDL)“ (until 2013), an anti-muslim protest group with similar contents (and contact to) „HoGeSa“ (Hooligans against Salafists) and „Pegida“ (Patriotic Europeanss against the islamization of the „Abendland“ = western, christian countries), and as a YouTuber with contacts to the Identitarian Movement (BTN).

 

All english texts on the European Election 2019:

Text in German:

 

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