MP Claudia Webbe Warns that Hindu-Muslims Riots Could Spread Beyond Leicester

This is a sort of follow-up to the piece I put up early today about the Indian news channels now reporting on the rioting in Leicester between Hindu and Muslim gangs. The Guardian has reported that Claudia Webbe, the Labour MP for East Leicester, has warned that the violence could spread beyond her city if the government doesn’t act. She also says it’s being stirred by right-wing extremism. The article by Rajiv Syal, ‘Leicester violence could spread beyond city, says MP’, begins

‘Violent clashes between groups of mainly Hindu and Muslim young men will spread beyond Leicester to other towns and cities without central government and police intervention, a local MP has warned.

Claudia Webbe, whose Leicester East constituency has been at the centre of several incidents over the past month, said ministers need to clamp down on “extremist rightwing ideology” and misinformation being spread through social media.

There was a tense standoff between groups of Muslim and Hindu men, and the police, on Saturday evening alongside outbreaks of sporadic violence.

A demonstration on Sunday resulted in the arrests of 18 people, eight of whom came from outside Leicestershire, the Guardian disclosed.

Webbe said: “The reality is that we have fringe elements led and inspired by extremism and rightwing ideology rearing its head in the UK and in the peaceful city of Leicester.

“If we do not understand the root cause this will spread beyond Leicester to other areas. The government needs to intervene and ensure that social media platforms stop this from getting much, much worse.”

On Tuesday, Hindu and Muslim leaders in the city issued a joint statement calling for unity and calm.

It said: “Our two faiths have lived harmoniously in this wonderful city, for over half a century. We arrived in this city together, we faced the same challenges together we fought off racist haters together and collectively made this city a beacon of diversity, and community cohesion.”

The article notes that the Indian High Commissioner has also written to condemn the violence and attacks on the symbols of Hinduism. But it also describes how Webbe contacted the police force expressing her concerns about the violence and the forces driving it.’

Webbe wrote to Leicestershire police’s temporary chief constable at the start of the month, and then again, before the weekend’s recent trouble, urging vigilance, and passing on reports “of incitement to hate targeting at those of Muslim and of Hindu faith”.

In one letter, Webbe said some constituents had voiced fears to her that violence was driven in part by “underlying Islamophobia in parts of Leicester’s communities, rather than an isolated incident”.

Days later, on 14 September, Webbe wrote to the chief constable claiming “ongoing disturbances” and “incitement to hate” incidents on 5 September, and on 9 September, following which two arrests were made.

She said constituents had told her “tensions in the community may be more long-standing and not narrowly related to the India v Pakistan” cricket match which took place on 28 August as part of the Asia Cup tournament in the UAE.

Writing before the weekend’s latest incidents, Webbe told the police of “incitement to hate being targeted at those of Muslim and Hindu faith, through hastily arranged protests”.’

She also says that there was a protest called against Muslim hate crime in the heart of the Hindu community, even though no crime had occurred. She believes the incident was deliberately staged to provoke trouble. She also describes finding gloves and balaclavas in back streets, evidence that gangs have come in from elsewhere to cause trouble. She also wanted the social media companies to act against the violence:

‘Webbe, who was elected as a Labour MP but sits as an independent after being found guilty of harassment, called for the police to co-ordinate a national response and for social media companies to intervene.

“Much of this violence and hate is being shared on social media and through online communications. It is racism and fascism and it is rearing its ugly head. It is a national problem that requires a national response by the police and other agencies.’

The social media firms – TikTok and Twitter and WhatsApp – are the mediums that are being used and they should bear some responsibility,” she said.’

The article also quotes another Labour politico, councillor Sharmen Rahmen, who also feels that there’s a danger this could become national, and that the violence is partly due to a lack of leadership and willpower among the city’s politicians to nip it in the bud before it started.

For further information, see: https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/uknews/leicester-violence-could-spread-beyond-city-says-mp/ar-AA122t8g?ocid=msedgdhp&pc=U531&cvid=459588adbcd1490280f1b4b8fef7f40f

I have a great deal of respect for Claudia Webbe. She stands for pretty much the same kind of left-wing policies I support. I’ve’ included the details of her correspondence with the police in order to stop any Tory trying to say that it’s somehow all Labour’s fault, as they’ve done with the grooming gang scandal and the Asian sweat shops in Leeds, despite the fact that some of the people trying to stop the abuses in both cases were Labour MPs and councillors.

I also feel that the article bears out my impression that the lack of national coverage of the riots may have been partly done to stop the violence spreading. I can also believe that religious/ racial extremists are behind the riots. I’ve seen allegations on one of the Asian news reports that the Hindu violence against the Muslims was inspired by Hindutva, the Hindu nationalism India’s head honcho Narendra Modi promotes. And I have no doubt that there are similar Muslim extremists on the Pakistani side.

This really needs to be damped down extremely quickly before the violence erupts elsewhere. And I hope the anti-racism organisations will start tackling the hidden prejudices and hatreds in other communities as well as Whites.

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3 Responses to “MP Claudia Webbe Warns that Hindu-Muslims Riots Could Spread Beyond Leicester”

  1. Mark Pattie Says:

    I am quite surprised about there being these religious riots in Leicester, as despite the large Pakistani Muslim and Gujarati Hindu communities, I always thought of that city as a shining example of multiculturalism gone well (see also Dudley, Nottingham, Bristol etc). Bravo to her for speaking out about it, even though I don’t think they’ll spread- I would certainly consider her views on integration to be more conservative than this supposedly “Conservative” government- even though she’s a Corbynite Labour MP. As for the coverage of the riots, I think it would have been more widely covered had it not been for the at-times-sycophantic coverage of the Queen’s death. Plus, I don’t think SW lives in the E. Midlands (I think he’s from Essex)- he would have found out about it if the riots had been in Ipswich or Bedford.

    • Mark Pattie Says:

      Further to my previous comment: it seems she has been proven right- the riots have spread to B’ham. No doubt the right-wing fringe (such as Reclaim and Ukip) will claim that this is exactly why we need to keep immigration as low as feasibly possible (except I’m fairly sure most of those involved are *not* immigrants).

      • beastrabban Says:

        No – the Mayor of Leicester told Mike Graham that those arrested, who weren’t from Leicester, were from Birmingham, not foreigners.

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