Iran-backed terror group Hezbollah’s flag can be flown on the streets of central London at the upcoming Al-Quds Day march – because the organisation’s “political wing” is not proscribed by the British government, police have confirmed.
Metropolitan Police Commander Jane Conners says both she and Commissioner Cressida Dick “share concerns” that the raising of the anti-Israel Hezbollah flag on London’s streets “may be construed as belonging to a terrorist organisation.”
But Conners adds: “Purely holding a flag does not necessarily incite religious or racial hatred. It is the words or actions of the person holding the flag that can cause incitement.”
The pair revealed their position in a letter sent to MP Louise Ellman, the vice-chair of the Labour Friends of Israel. She had written asking if police would allow the controversial standard, which features a dagger and an assault rifle, to be raised once again at the June 10 parade.
— Jack Mendel (@Mendelpol) June 18, 2017
Al-Quds Day began in 1979, driven by the late Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeini to call for the State of Israel to be destroyed.
Organisers claim it “unites for the freedom of the oppressed in Palestine and beyond” and it is co-run by the Islamic Human Rights Commission.
Hezbollah is an illegal, anti-Semitic terrorist organisation, designated as a terror organization in its entirety by the Arab League, Bahrain, Canada, France, Israel, Australia, the Netherlands, and the United States. But the European Union, as well as the United Kingdom, maintain a difference between the group’s military and political wings, seeking only to proscribe the former.
London’s Mayor Sadiq Khan was slammed by members of the capital’s Jewish community last year over his refusal to ban the march outright.
Raphi Bloom, chairman of North West Friends of Israel group, told Breitbart News that despite repeated lobbying of Mr. Khan and a petition supported by almost 20,000 signatures calling for the event to be cancelled, the city’s leader has remained steadfast in his refusal to intervene.
“Hezbollah is a proscribed terrorist organisation. It makes NO distinction between its armed and political wing, yet its supporters will be allowed to march through London’s streets unhindered,” Mr. Bloom said. “This is extremely disappointing and challenges the mayor’s commitment to rid the streets of London of extremism.”
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