Black country

Dudley EDL rally prompts West Midlands Police warning

English Defence League
Image caption The English Defence League describes itself as opposed to Islamic extremism

Police have warned trouble will not be tolerated at an English Defence League (EDL) rally planned for Dudley.

The EDL plans to gather there on 17 July, but previous demonstrations around the UK have seen clashes with anti far-right groups.

In May two men were arrested after a rooftop demonstration following an unofficial EDL gathering in Dudley where there were clashes with police.

West Midlands Police said intelligence and tactics would help keep order.

Ch Supt Tom Coughlan said officers were aware communities, locations or individuals may feel vulnerable as a result of the EDL rally.

'Better prepared'

He said: "We have a duty to allow protesters to do so peacefully, but incitement to hatred or violence or other crimes against people or property will be dealt with firmly.

"Previous experience has allowed us to fine-tune our response and tactics and as a result we are better prepared than ever to ensure the demonstration occurs with the maximum regard to public safety."

The EDL describes itself as being opposed to Islamic extremism in the UK.

It rose to prominence in 2008 after Muslim demonstrators shouted slogans at parading British soldiers in Luton.

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