‘Rapefugees not welcome’ stickers plastered around English coastal town
The stickers were found on several lampposts and bus stops. One sticker features a cartoon of a woman being chased by three men with knives. One of the men looks as though he is wearing a thawb, the robe traditionally worn by Muslim men over their clothes.
Beneath the image is the name of the far-right ‘North West Infidels’ and their motto: “Fighting for white rights!”
Another poster informs residents that neo-Nazi group ‘Combat 18’ “operates in this area.”
Yet another displays the prophet Muhammad’s name and a series of Islamophobic, racist and generally derogatory statements below.
“I spotted the first one last month. I phoned the council to get it removed,” said one resident who did not want to be named.
“It’s just not right, they shouldn’t be there. They’re awful.
“The council came out and removed it but more and more are appearing. There’s quite a few in the area now. I’ve phoned the council back up and I’ve also reported them to the police – it needs to stop.”
Readers of the Shield Gazette took to the local newspaper’s Facebook page to express their disgust.
“This hate isn’t wanted here!” wrote Lianne Douglas.
Although the group did not issue a formal statement, a member of the North West Infidels tweeted shortly after the Gazette approached them for comment: “I’m glad [the stickers] are up and being seen.”
South Shields police confirmed it is now investigating the case, with neighborhood inspector John Smith saying: “This type of literature will not be tolerated in South Shields and anyone caught posting them should expect to be put before the court.
“This material has been removed and anyone who has any information relating to the posters should contact the South Shields Neighbourhood Policing Team.”
A spokesman from anti-racist campaign Hope Not Hate told RT: “Thankfully these disgusting stickers were swiftly removed, which shows just how little support those placing them have. Usually it’s one or two deluded individuals peddling their hate, at a time when far-right groups in the UK are facing serious decline and internal problems.
“The irony, of course, is that it was [radical Islamic cleric] Anjem Choudary’s followers who made headlines for their ‘sharia zone’ stickers in east London. So really whatever fascist sympathiser is sticking these up is simply copying an Islamist extremist – which tells you all you need to know.”
There has been a 14 percent increase in hate crimes across Britain since the Brexit referendum, including the murder of a Polish man in Harlow, Essex.
Scotland, where the remain vote won with a comfortable majority, was the only area with a falling number of hate crimes according to police data.