Ukip suspends members after masked group storms socialist bookshop 'chanting about Muslims and paedophilia'

Elizabeth Jones, Luke Nash-Jones and Martin Costello understood to be involved in incident, party chairman says

Henry Austin
Tuesday 07 August 2018 01:26 BST
Far-right protesters including man in Trump mask attack socialist bookshop

Ukip has suspended three party members following an incident at Britain’s largest socialist bookshop when far-right protesters chanted fascist songs, tore up books and threatened staff.

Police were called to Bookmarks in Bloomsbury, central London, over the weekend following reports of a protest.

A statement on the shop’s Facebook page said “around a dozen mask-wearing fascists” attempted to intimidate staff and customers and to destroy books and other materials.

In a statement, Ukip said party chairman Tony McIntyre has suspended three members – Elizabeth Jones, Luke Nash-Jones and Martin Costello – pending an investigation.

“It is understood that the three members were involved in an incident at the Bookmarks bookshop in London on Saturday,” it said.

There were no arrests and no reports of any injuries following the incident.

The shop, which is planning a free public “solidarity” event with appearances from authors on 11 August, said it had received messages of support from MPs and writers as well as thousands of activists from around the world after the incident, which followed the conclusion of a “Make Britain Great Again” protest against the censoring of a conspiracy theory website nearby.

The far-right group filmed their actions before swiftly deleting the video from their YouTube channel, however a copy was saved and uploaded again on the channel Far-Right Watch.

It shows protesters screaming abuse, tearing up signs on display in the shop, and brandishing books with titles they disapprove of.

Stand Up To Racism, the anti-fascist pressure group, said one of the attackers ransacking the shop wore a Donald Trump mask while others carried placards reading “British Bolshevik Cult”.

A member of staff told the organisation that books on Islamophobia were “ridiculed and thrown around”.

“They chanted about Muslims and paedophilia, and called us traitors. While not mentioning Tommy Robinson, the links are there to see,” the worker said.

Stand Up To Racism added that the attackers threatened to return and picked a copy of The Jewish Question off the shelf, “holding it aloft as proof of the antisemitism of the left”.

Press Association contributed to this report

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in