Rallies in Rotherham over 'child protection scandal'

The English Defence League and Unite Against Fascism are staging rallies following the revelations last month about the alleged scale of child abuse in South Yorkshire.

3 arrests at EDL demo

Today’s demonstrations in Rotherham between opposing groups, supporters of the English Defence League and United Against Fascism, passed by without any significant disorder. 800 extra police officers were on duty in Rotherham town centre to minimise disruption and protect property.

Approximately 300 EDL members took part in demonstration while 150 people held a counter-demonstration elsewhere in the town centre.

South Yorkshire Police made just three arrests; one man was arrested on suspicion of public order including making threats towards a police officer, a second man was arrested on suspicion of affray and a third man was arrested on suspicion of possessing an offensive weapon.

I’m pleased that the demonstrations passed without significant disruption today and that the residents of Rotherham were able to go about their usual business as much as possible.

– South Yorkshire Assistant Chief Constable Andy Holt

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Rallies in Rotherham over 'child protection scandal'

Calendar

Extra police will be on duty in Rotherham today as the English Defence League and Unite Against Fascism are set to stage rallies. It follows allegations last month that South Yorkshire Police withheld information about the extent of exploitation of young white females by organised groups of men.

South Yorkshire Police has denied the claims. Approximately two hundred people are expected to take part in a march by the English Defence League from 12.30pm, which will end up at Rotherham Town Hall. A march by the Unite Against Fascism will also end there, some time after 3pm.

There is expected to be disruption to traffic and public transport using Corporation Street between noon and 3pm.