Far-right Britain First to stand for elections in NI
The leader of Britain First has said that the far-right group has now registered as a political party here and plans to run candidates.
Paul Golding was speaking after the Northern Ireland Against Terrorism rally yesterday, which saw him and deputy leader Jayda Fransen address a 50-strong crowd of supporters outside Belfast City Hall.
Mr Golding said that the event was just the first of many in Northern Ireland and that the group was now planning a "massive full-on Britain First rally" outside City Hall next month.
"There was a little hostility from about 10 unwashed today," he told the Belfast Telegraph.
"I had a can of something thrown at me, but managed to block it at the last minute.
"But our turnout was good and we were pleased at how it went.
"In about five weeks' time we are going to hold a massive, full-on Britain First rally outside City Hall.
"All the speakers who were there today will be at it, plus some more people.
"It will be much more organised and we will put a lot more effort into getting people along, and I think we will have a really good turnout at that.
"The theme will basically be Britain First coming to Northern Ireland, and it will be to gain more support.
"We are set up as a formal political party now in Northern Ireland, so we are going to be standing candidates for upcoming elections. You will absolutely see a Britain First candidate in the next Northern Ireland election."
Davy McAuley from the Belfast Says No To Fascism group says it will oppose Britain First every step of the way and will bring thousands of anti-fascists on to the streets in September. "I don't think Britain First will have the guts to come back to Belfast," he said.
"There were a lot of distractions today with the other rallies and marches, so he thinks he got a pass.
"If Paul Golding wants to hold another rally we will bring thousands of people on to the streets. We will show them what the anti-fascist movement is.
"As far as running candidates in local elections goes, the far-right have attempted that in Northern Ireland before and got absolutely nowhere.
"I hope they will be able to accept that they will only get maybe 20 votes.
"The situation here is so sectarian at the minute, with people voting orange and green. The last thing we need is a crowd of Nazis coming into the mix. They will be rejected completely by loyalists and republicans and by everyone else, and rightly so."